Jake Gyllenhaal and Benedict Cumberbatch are in talks to star as George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison, respectively, in The Weinstein Co.’s The Current War.
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl director Alfonso Gomez-Rejon is in discussions to helm the Edison-Westinghouse-feud film that was penned by playwright-screenwriter Michael Mitnick (The Giver), whose script made the Black List in 2011. The plan is for Gomez-Rejon to make Current War his next film after directing the Will Smith starrer Collateral Beauty, which will shoot in the fall. Also this fall, Gyllenhaal is shooting Tom Ford‘s Nocturnal Animals.
Current War takes place in the late 1880s and revolves around power titans Edison and Westinghouse’s battle over the supply of electricity. Edison championed direct current (DC) for electric-power distribution over alternating current (AC), which was backed by several European companies and Westinghouse Electric.
TWC will finance Current War and release it domestically.
You have to love an actor who’s capable of laughing at himself.
A host of British filmmaking talent have spoken out in support of Syrian refugees in the wake of the escalating human tragedy caused by the ongoing conflict in Syria. Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Michael Caine, Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch have all lent their voices to a campaign criticising the UK government for its response thus far to the humanitarian crisis and urging PM David Cameron to do more.
The issue of Syrian refugees has garnered particular media attention in recent days following the heartbreaking photos of dead Syrian children washed ashore on the Turkish coastline, attempting to find sanctuary. One image, in particular, of 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi’s body being carried by a distraught Turkish officer, has shocked people around the world. Almost half of Syria’s once 20 million strong population has fled the country, many to neighboring Lebanon and Jordan, to escape the brutal violence that has engulfed the country ever since the beginning of an initially peaceful uprising in 2011 against the government of Bashar Al-Assad. The conflict has degenerated since then into a geo-political battle between competing regional and international powers, and been complicated by the emergence of the horrifically violent terrorist group ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
Benedict Cumberbatch thinks his sex symbol status is a “reflection and appreciation” of his work.
The 39-year-old actor insists no one ever found him attractive until he starred as the titular detective in ‘Sherlock’ and so believes people only think he is sexy because they are drawn to the character.
He said: “I was never seen as sexy by anyone until ‘Sherlock’ came along and so I understand [being seen as a sex symbol] more as a reflection and appreciation of the work, rather than my own natural magnetism.
“I certainly remember when I was an adolescent and despairing why girls weren’t interested in me.
“I’ve always maintained that Sherlock is sexy and people are merely projecting his cold, brilliant, charming, flawed self onto me.
“He’s an extraordinary man whose appeal lies in being so very different and difficult and someone whom people find strikingly attractive and compelling. He’s the ultimate outsider hero.”
Benedict – who has a three-month-old son, Christopher, with wife Sophie Hunter – is always delighted when fans stop him in the street to praise his work.
He told Britain’s OK! magazine “I’m very happy that audiences have responded so enthusiastically to the character.
“When people stop you in the street and want to congratulate you on your work and express their joy at having seen you in the role, it’s such an affirmation of that. You feel great.”
Long live the Prince! On August 25, one of the most talked-about productions of Hamlet in the play’s 400 or so years in existence will officially open at London’s Barbican Theatre. That, of course, has everything to do with the Shakespeare classic’s headliner, Olivier winner and Oscar nominee Benedict Cumberbatch, who has chosen, at the height of a dizzying screen career, to tread the boards in one of the most challenging roles in the theater.
Unfortunately, Cumberbatch has been forced to take arms against a sea of troubles. There were the critics jumping the gun and reviewing the play’s first preview (when the “To Be or Not To Be” soliloquy was tried out at the beginning) to some theatergoers not receiving Patti LuPone’s memo and thinking it appropriate to film his performance. This was despite the fact that National Theatre Live will be broadcasting the Lyndsey Turner-helmed show to cinemas around the world on October 15.
Happily, the fastest-selling ticket in London theater history, lives up to the hype. We can report that Cumberbatch is superb in the role, making the iconic Prince of Denmark his own. He is ably supported by the cast, including Game of Thrones’ Ciarán Hinds as the conniving Claudius and Tony winner Jim Norton as Polonius, who lands some of the most famous lines in stage history with delicious aplomb (“brevity is the soul of wit,” “method in the madness” and more).
Cumberbatch’s next projects include Doctor Strange and additional Sherlock episodes; we can only hope that he can find a gap in his schedule to bring the epic production to Broadway.
Hamlet plays at London’s Barbican Theatre through October 31.
With the closing of our previous host, we’ve had to switch servers and get a new url, so, bookmark our new address: benedict-cumberbatch.org.
Thanks for the support, and sorry about the incovenience!
Looks like we have a World Premiere for Black Mass! Via Collider:
Festival season is almost upon us. Next week we’ll probably start hearing the lineups for the Venice Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival, and we’ll know what movies might be trying to make their way in the Oscar race.
While they have yet to announce their full lineup, the Venice Film Festival has revealed that Scott Cooper’s gangster drama Black Mass is picking up some festival cred. The movie will play out of competition at the Festival on September 4th before opening in U.S. theaters on September 18th. The film stars Johnny Depp as notorious mobster Whitey Bulger, who simultaneously worked as an FBI informant and committed horrible crimes throughout the Boston area for decades. The film also stars Joel Edgerton, Benedict Cumberbatch, Rory Cochrane, Jesse Plemons, Dakota Johnson, Peter Sarsgaard, and Kevin Bacon.
In case you haven’t seen it, check out the Black Mass trailer below. The 72nd Venice International Film Festival will run from September 2 – 12th.
In 1970s South Boston, FBI Agent John Connolly (Edgerton) persuades Irish mobster Jimmy Bulger (Depp) to collaborate with the FBI in order to eliminate their common enemy: the Italian mob. The drama tells the story of this unholy alliance, which spiraled out of control, allowing Whitey to evade law enforcement while consolidating his power and becoming one of the most ruthless and dangerous gangsters in Boston history.
Tilda Swinton to join Benedict Cumberbatch on Doctor Strange.
From an archangel to a lawyer to a vampire, there isn’t much that Tilda Swinton has taken on and not been brilliant at. Now, the British Oscar winner is attempting a new challenge – a Marvel film.
Tilda confirmed that she has joined Doctor Strange, also starring Benedict Cumberbatch, as The Ancient One who in the comics was known as the healer in the Himalayas who taught Strange how to tap into his psychic powers.
‘We’re so far in talks we’re not talking anymore,’ she told Screen Crush.
‘It’s done! The idea of playing The Ancient One is really just too tickling. I can’t say no to that!’
We can’t believe it’s taken this long for Tilda to get involved in Marvel and their magical stories, and it seems Tilda agrees.
‘I’m a Marvel fan and I think this particular world that Doctor Strange goes into is really, really, really exciting.
‘I’m really interested as both an actor and a fan to see what’s done in this particular world. It’s all about creativity. It’s not about everything exploding at the end. It’s about something very different.’