Benedict Cumberbatch

Oct. 21, 2014 | 10:00 a.m.

‘Hobbit': See Benedict Cumberbatch writhe and snarl as Smaug

Benedict Cumberbatch on the set of "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug." (Screenshot from bonus feature footage)
The extended edition of “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” is available for digital download today and out on Blu-ray Nov. 4, but Hero Complex readers get an exclusive first look at a clip from the bonus features. The clip showcases actor Benedict Cumberbatch’s performance as the deadly dragon Smaug, a miserly lizard who guards his hoarded, stolen gold in a mountain lair that was once home to the dwarf king of Erebor. Like Gollum actor Andy Serkis, Cumberbatch employed performance-capture technology to play the enormous dragon in Peter Jackson’s film trilogy based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel “The Hobbit.” “You kind of have to … imagine yourself into a vast creature in a huge space when you’re really crawling about on a gray bit of carpet,” Cumberbatch says in the video. Serkis — who has pioneered performance-capture acting with his […]
July 25, 2014 | 2:03 p.m.

Comic-Con: Watch Benedict Cumberbatch talk Sherlock, ‘Penguins’ and more

Benedict Cumberbatch. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)
Benedict Cumberbatch made his first trip to Comic-Con on Thursday with DreamWorks Animation’s “Penguins of Madagascar,” and after leaving the shrieks of Hall H, he stopped to chat with Hero Complex. Cumberbatch talked about the trick of playing the smartest guy in the room, from a modern detective in “Sherlock” to an animated wolf who runs an elite undercover interspecies task force in “Penguins of Madagascar” to World War II codebreaker Alan Turing in the upcoming drama “The Imitation Game.” FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 “I’ve been very, very fortunate so that it looks like there’s something going on behind my eyes that looks like I’m thinking about or understanding or encompassing the brilliance of their minds,” Cumberbatch said. “Brilliant people have private moments of self-doubt, which we can all relate to, but they also have these extraordinary moments of discovery.” In the midst of extreme fandom […]
July 24, 2014 | 2:59 p.m.

Comic-Con 2014: Benedict Cumberbatch charms the fanboy faithful

Benedict Cumberbatch attends the DreamWorks Animation panel on Day 1 of Comic-Con International 2014 on Thursday, July 24, in San Diego. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
In the first major studio presentation at this year’s Comic-Con International, DreamWorks Animation was eager to show off its upcoming alien buddy-comedy “Home” and its big-screen spinoff “Penguins of Madagascar.” But for the fans who packed Hall H for Thursday’s panel, some of whom had lined up overnight, the main attraction wasn’t cuddly extraterrestrials or adorable penguins: it was actor Benedict Cumberbatch. The star of the BBC hit “Sherlock” and last year’s “Star Trek Into Darkness,” Cumberbatch had never actually attended the convention before this year and, to no one’s surprise, he was met with a rock star’s greeting of screams, squeals and popping flashes. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 To ensure the focus remained squarely on “Penguins of Madagascar,” in which the actor voices a secretive and heroic wolf named Classified, panel moderator Craig Ferguson half-jokingly admonished the crowd, “I’m warning you, if anyone asks a […]
July 23, 2014 | 4:54 p.m.

Comic-Con 2014: Cumberbatch, Radcliffe sightings and more in San Diego

Comic-Con 2014 in San Diego officially opens Thursday but fans arrive early to pickup credentials on Wednesday. Travis Jackson with 1540 production helps with the construction of Warner Bros.' 24-foot tall sculpture of Godzilla behind Hall H. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
If you’re planning to spend any time in downtown San Diego this weekend, keep an eye out for Homer Simpson’s head. That iconic bald pate is expected to take up a noticeable portion of the city’s shoreline in a clever bit of promotion for “The Simpsons,” one of thousands of movies, TV shows, comic books and video game titles vying for attention at the annual pop culture expo that kicks off Thursday. FULL COVERAGE: Comic-Con 2014 Comic-Con International long ago evolved from its modest origins — it began as an intimate gathering in the basement of San Diego’s U.S. Grant Hotel in 1970 — into an important marketing platform for Hollywood, an opportunity for studios and networks to bring an increasingly broad range of movies and series directly to an enthusiastic audience of roughly 130,000 fans amid a frenzied, carnival-like […]
March 03, 2014 | 11:25 a.m.

Benedict Cumberbatch photobombs U2, his way into our hearts

Oscar host Ellen DeGeneres might have taken down Twitter with the star-studded selfie she snapped during Sunday night’s Academy Awards telecast, but earlier in the evening, English actor Benedict Cumberbatch crafted one special impromptu photograph of his own. Cumberbatch has a way of setting Internet hearts aflame even on an average day, but the actor, who had a role in Sunday’s best picture Oscar winner, “12 Years a Slave,” managed yet another “meme-orable” turn on the Academy Awards’ red carpet, leaping into frame as venerable rock band U2 was posing for a group photo. Hands raised, with a silly expression, Cumberbatch might now rank as the most amusing celebrity photobomber of all time. Best picture from the #Oscars? Cumberbatch photobombs U2. More here: http://t.co/JJYce9QqJG (Pic: Reuters/Mike Blake) pic.twitter.com/RwJZYmkguJ — The Telegraph (@Telegraph) March 3, 2014 He did turn up in […]
Feb. 18, 2014 | 3:30 p.m.

‘Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’ arrives on Blu-ray, DVD April 8

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” reigned at the box office during the holidays, earning more than $860 million worldwide after it opened Dec. 13. Now the film is set to arrive on Blu-Ray and DVD on April 8 — in a variety of packages, including a limited edition set selling for $105.43. The limited collector’s edition includes two Gates of Erebor replica bookends from the Noble Collection and features the theatrical version of the film in 3-D high-definition, high-definition and standard definition; only 25,000 will be available in the U.S. For those hoping to own the film at a lower price point, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” will be available as a Blu-ray 3-D combo pack for $44.95, a Blu-ray combo pack for $35.99 and as a 2-disc DVD special edition for $28.98. All versions include a digital […]
Feb. 04, 2014 | 1:16 p.m.

Benedict Cumberbatch faces Muppet Moriarty on ‘Sesame Street’

Benedict Cumberbatch on "Sesame Street" (featured image)
Benedict Cumberbatch, best known for his performances as the eponymous detective in “Sherlock” and the villainous Khan in “Star Trek Into Darkness,” is appealing to the “Sesame Street” crowd. In an adorable video from PBS titled “Benedict Cumberbatch and the Sign of Four (or is it Three?),” the actor receives a “perplexing puzzle” from Murray Monster, who has dubbed himself “Murray-arity” — a reference, of course, to the brilliant Sherlockian villain Moriarty. “Are you ready for my brain-bending challenge, Sherlock?” the furry red monster asks Cumberbatch. “I’m not really Sherlock,” Cumberbatch responds. “I just play him on the television.” “What’s your name, then?” Murray asks. “Benedict.” “Well then are you ready for my brain-bending challenge Benedict Sherlock?” The Muppet proceeds to ask Sherlock whether there are more apples or more oranges on the table. “You’re the super-sleuth. Figure it out!” […]
Jan. 03, 2014 | 1:54 p.m.

‘Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug': Complete interviews, videos and photos

“The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” reigned at the box office during the holidays, earning more than $658 million worldwide since it opened Dec. 13. The second installment in Peter Jackson’s planned trilogy based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s landmark 1937 novel chronicles Bilbo Baggins’ (Martin Freeman) journey through the dark and mysterious Mirkwood Forest and through Lake-town to help Thorin Oakenshield (Richard Armitage) and his company of dwarfs reclaim their treasure-filled homeland from the dragon Smaug (Benedict Cumberbatch). The third and final movie, “The Hobbit: There and Back Again,” is due in theaters Dec. 17. Hero Complex counted down to “Desolation of Smaug” with exclusive interviews, videos and photo galleries.  Now that the spoiler-wary have had a chance to see “Smaug” in theaters, here’s a look back at our coverage leading up to its release. GALLERIES ‘The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug’: 60 […]
Dec. 30, 2013 | 2:56 p.m.

‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug': Joe Letteri talks dragons

Benedict Cumberbatch's memorable dragon was a highlight of Peter Jackson's "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug." (Warner Bros.)
Peter Jackson and Joe Letteri will receive the Producers Guild of America’s Vanguard Award next month for the groundbreaking digital creations dreamed up in New Zealand’s WETA Digital. It’s an appropriate honor. Together, Jackson and Letteri have conjured all manner of creations — Letteri won Oscars for his work on two films in Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” trilogy and on the writer-director’s remake of “King Kong” (though Andy Serkis’ vivid performance-capture turns as Gollum and the lovelorn giant ape were certainly central to those victories). The duo might be in contention for Academy Awards once more for Jackson’s latest fantasy adventure, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.” The movie is brimming with technological marvels — the spiders of Mirkwood, the dynamic barrel chase scene — but perhaps none are quite so marvelous as the vividly rendered dragon Smaug played […]
Dec. 16, 2013 | 5:00 p.m.

‘Hobbit’ star Benedict Cumberbatch on Smaug, his ‘porn star dragon’

Benedict Cumberbatch breathes life into J.R.R. Tolkien's dragon in "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug." (Warner Bros.)
Benedict Cumberbatch inspires the sort of rabid, overwhelming Internet love usually reserved for cats wearing sweaters and cute baby videos, but sitting with the actor even briefly, it’s sort of easy to understand why. In the course of 20 minutes, Cumberbatch, while enjoying a cup of tea and some Swedish Fish, sounded off with ease and eloquence on his personal relationship to the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien, his “porn star dragon” Smaug — one of the two characters to receive title billing in the latest epic fantasy from Peter Jackson, “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug” — and dealing with international celebrity (specifically being recognized for his acclaimed portrayal of Sherlock Holmes by a waitress in Oklahoma, a tale he shared by dropping in and out of a rural American accent). Check out what he had to say below. Hero […]
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