Following the official opening of The Old Vic's new production of King Lear starring double Academy Award-w...
Benedict Cumberbatch CBE was born in Hammersmith, London in 1976. After attending the University of Manchester, studying Drama he trained at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, graduating with an MA in Classical Acting.
His theatre career started in 2001 when he performed in numerous London plays including Hedda Gabler, playing the role of George Tesman at the Almeida Theatre. This was later transferred to the Duke’s of York’s Theatre in March 2005 where he reprised his role, marking his first West End appearance. In 2010 Cumberbatch starred in Terence Rattigan’s revival of After the Dance at the Royal National Theatre. He also acted in Danny Boyle’s charity theatre event The Children’s Monologues at the Old Vic Theatre in 2010. During his performance in Frankenstein at the Olivier, National Theatre he played both Victor Frankenstein and his creature on alternate nights opposite Jonny Lee Miller, which was later broadcast in cinemas as part of National Theatre Live. For this role he received the Laurence Olivier Award, the Evening Standard Award and the Critics’ Circle Theatre Award. Cumberbatch was also involved in the National Theatre’s 50 Years on Stage anniversary event along with actors such as Helen Mirren, Judi Dench, Rory Kinnear and Alex Jennings.
Outside the theatre he is well known for his title role in the TV adaption of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Sherlock alongside Martin Freeman as Dr Watson and created by fellow actor Mark Gatiss. Other notable television roles include his performance as Stephen Hawking in television film Hawking (2004), Parade’s End (2012) and The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses (2016).
Cumberbatch has also performed a variety of roles in feature films such Atonement (2007, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), and War Horse (2011). He also starred as Khan in Star Trek Into Darkness (2013), as William Prince Ford in 12 Years a Slave (2013) and as Julian Assange in The Fifth Estate (2013). His, perhaps, most notable role was his portrayal of Alan Turing in the historical drama thriller The Imitation Game, based on Alan Turing: The Enigma which was also adapted for BBc and stage. He has also played Smaug and the Necromancer in the acclaimed Hobbit film series.
His awards repertoire for acting include three Laurence Olivier nominations (winning one), four Emmy Award nominations, winning Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie for Sherlock. He received six BAFTA nominations, five Screen Actors Guild nomination, two Golden Globe nominaions and an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for his performance in The Imitation Game
In 2015 he returned to the West End in Shakespeare’s Hamlet at the Barbican Theatre. For his portrayal of the iconic, title character Hamlet he earned the Laurence Olivier Award nomination for the third time.
Selected London & West End Stage Appearances
|50 Years on Stage||National|
|Frankenstein||Victor Frankenstein/ Creature||Olivier, National||2011||Review|
|The Children's Monologues||Old Vic||2010|
|After The Dance||David Scott-Fowler||National||2010||Review|
|The City||Royal Court||2008|
|Period of Adjustment||George||Almeida||2006||Review|
|Hedda Gabler||George Tesman||Duke of York's||2005|
|Hedda Gabler||George Tesman||Almeida||2001||Review|