Friday 23 February 2018

Holmes made Cumberbatch global star

A good education, a good bone structure and a recent move into married life are not the only things Benedict Cumberbatch has in common with his good friend, and leading actor Oscar rival, Eddie Redmayne.

They have both played physicist Stephen Hawking and while Redmayne's performance could still see him pick up an academy award, there are many who reckon Cumberbatch's was better.

He was a relative unknown when he played the part in a 2004 BBC drama and it set him up for a series of major roles in weighty dramas such as To The Ends Of The Earth and Small Island.

But any plans for life as a steadily successful actor disappeared when he picked up the deerstalker and signed on to play master sleuth Sherlock Holmes in the BBC's updated take on the classic crime stories.

The show made him a star around the world with fans from China - where he was dubbed Curly Fu - to the studios of Hollywood who marked him out as one to watch.

They soon signed him up to star in Star Trek: Into Darkness and 12 Years A Slave with both films benefiting from the attentions of his global army of fans who jokingly refer to themselves as ''Cumberbitches''.

They also flocked to cinemas to see him as tortured code-breaking genius Alan Turing in The Imitation Game - the role that has seen him nominated for the leading actor Oscar up against Redmayne.

Cumberbatch has not also seemed comfortable dealing with the scale of his fame, he was forced to complain when a star-struck neighbour started tweeting his every move, and hordes of fans - often in costume - flock to every Sherlock event from around the world.

He managed for the most part to keep the cameras away from his wedding to Sophie Hunter last Saturday, but he will have no such luck this weekend when - win or lose - they will follow his every move.

Press Association

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