Thank goodness – Esquire finally released their slideshow of Benedict Cumberbatch’s amazing coat-p0rn editorial by photographer Julian Broad. These photos are amazing, and I felt weird jacking them from secondary sources. Now we get to see Cumbercheekbones and Cumbercoats in all of their original glory. Amen. The glove photo is still my favorite – he looks like he’s about to give me a good spanking. Bless him. You can see more from Esquire’s Cumberpiece here. Ben also has some new interviews out (yay!).
For his role as Julian Assange in The Fifth Estate, Benedict Cumberbatch was required to wear white wigs, fake teeth, and contact lenses—all amounting to a “spooky” resemblance to the WikiLeaks founder.
“It was, like, ‘O.K., you really do look like him. Maybe we could take you to the embassy and you could spring him out,’” Cumberbatch said at a Cinema Society screening on Friday. “Then I said, ‘Well, where does that leave me? Am I going to be incarcerated in the converted bathroom behind Harrod’s for the rest of my life?’ Jokes aside, his real predicament is really precarious. You play someone, you empathize with them . . . whatever cases there are for and against him, I feel for a guy who’s in that predicament.”
The actor says most of the questions he’s been asked are not about the film’s costumes but about the controversial nature of WikiLeaks. “This is actually the first time I’ve been asked what it was like to be involved as an actor, rather than the issues,” he said. “I’m happy to talk about the wigs,” he added, laughing.
Assange asked the actor permission before publishing his open letter criticizing his participation in the movie, which details the WikiLeaks founder’s road to exile. “He’s a polite man,” Cumberbatch told VF Daily. “To an extent. If you don’t cross him, he’s a polite man.”
Cumberbatch has responded to Assange’s letter, although he has not made his comments public. “Like I said to him at the time, I had a gentlemen’s agreement not to publish,” Cumberbatch said. “It would have been easy for me to sort of drift into Vanity Fair territory and go, ‘Here’s the correspondence,’ but I didn’t want to do that. I took our exchange as being a personal one, and something that was to do with a private consultation as to whether I should do this film or not.”
Cumberbatch considers the movie a complex and important story on a person whom he did not want in any sense to vilify. “This is a three-dimensional portrait of a human being. It’s a skewed point of view because, of course, it comes from Daniel Domscheit-Berg’s book, and the Guardian, who we know had pretty acrimonious relationships with Julian,” Cumberbatch said. “But that doesn’t then necessitate that I am trying to facilitate a State Department or right-wing propagandist’s point of view, as he’s trying to make out. I wrote that response, pretty clearly, pretty politely, and took my time with it, and it was a larger e-mail than he sent to me.”
Despite the fact that Assange declined to meet with Cumberbatch about the role, the two have an open line of communication. “I’m fine with keeping that private. He can do what he likes,” Cumberbatch said.
Yes, more wiglet talk! I’m sort of obsessed with how Ben changes his look from film to film. I’m starting to think he loves a good wiglet and a good set of fake teeth. Boy loves his prosthetics too.
He also has a good interview with The Chicago Sun-Times where he does talk a little bit more about the wig and the contacts, saying: “He has softer features and I’m a bit angular. I have a longer face; he has a rounder face. The hard thing was the contact lenses. His eyes are blue and mine are greener, and mine change whatever light I’m in.” God, I love it when Benedict talks about his features. I feel like he looks in the mirror a lot and tries to figure out the best way to describe himself and his auburn dong muff. He also tells the Sun-Times that his fans are “Cumber-collectors. The ‘bitches’ thing just wasn’t feminist.”
Photos courtesy of Julian Broad/Esquire.