Benedict Cumberbatch on Erotic Fan Fiction & Wanting a Ryan Gosling Moment
By Stacy Lambe
Photo: Getty Images
It’s safe to say that Benedict Cumberbatch is having an “it” moment.
The 38-year-old British actor, who, up until this point, was most famous for portraying Sherlock Holmes on the Emmy award-winning BBC series and being the subject of an endless circulation of memes, is enjoying tons of hype ahead of the premiere of The Imitation Game. The Oscar-baiting biopic about Alan Turning, the gay mathematician who helped the Allies win World War II by cracking the Nazi’s Enigma code, puts Cumberbatch squarely on the A-list and the media can’t get enough of him.
Between FastCompany, New York, and Out, the actor has been profiled by just about every major publication. And he hasn’t held back when it comes to topics, such as erotic gay fan fiction, being the subject of memes, his hopes for a Ryan Gosling moment, and who his celeb crush is.
On his desire to play the romantic lead:
“I’ve never had a [Ryan] Gosling moment as a character. I’ve never been the kind of guy who’s made all the girls go gooey. I think it’s about time I did.” (New York)
On why Naomi Watts is his celebrity crush: "Man, I have such a crush on her. She’s just gorgeous. I know she’s married, and I’m very happy as well, but she—I think it’s her talent." (New York)
On what attracts him to his most famous roles:
“I’ve played straight-up heroes and comic fools and kids next door. But the oddballs, the outsiders – Sherlock, Assange, Turing – they spike. And there’s a reason for that. Because they make us lean in. And that’s what makes them attractive.” (The Big Issue)
On that “drunken” incident at last year’s GQ award ceremony: "I had drunk a lot of stuff, but I actually wasn’t that drunk. My bladder was up to my nostrils. I literally thought if I went like that urine would pour out of my nose!" (New York)
On his email obsession — or panic: "I do get a panic attack when I look at other people's phones and they have 1,200 emails. It really makes me go, 'How do you swallow your food? I don't understand how your body actually functions.' " (FastCompany)
On embracing — and interacting — with the Internet memes:
“I think if you take it too seriously, you’re dead in the water, and if you ignore it, then it’s kind of an insult because it’s a reality. So I engage with it on my own terms, and people seem to really respond to that because it’s me being me, rather than me going, ‘Hi, internet, thank you so much! I love you so much, all the feels, squidgies, LOL! Awkward!’ ” (New York)
On all the erotic gay fan fiction:
“Because, you know, they either want to make John [Watson] into a sort of cute little toy, or me into a cute toy, or we’re fucking in space on a bed, chained together. It’s always , like, one of them is tired, one comes back from work, the other is horny, a lump appears in his trousers, and then they’re at it. It’s usually me getting it — I’m biting Watson’s dog tags.” (Out)
On what happens when the fandom gets out of hand:
“People were literally dragged off the streets [crying], ‘I just wanted an autograph.’ It’s horrible. And then I get into the back of an SUV, going, ‘Sorry,’ and this one girl goes, ‘Yeah, whatever,’ with tears in her eyes. It’s not fucking me. I can’t control an ex-military security man who’s just had a whole day of it, and just thinks he’ll lose his job if he doesn’t punch some poor teenage girl in the face to give me an inch more room to breathe.” (Out)
On the hype (and endless amount of press):
“Look, I get accused of being overhyped, overexposed, over here and there and everywhere. The truth is [doing press] is part of my job and I work a lot, so I'm going to be talking about my work a lot. Beyond that, I want to live my life and not be in people's faces. There's quite enough of me out there.” (FastCompany)