It’s Benedict Cumberbatch’s 40th birthday on 19 July and a lot of people had requested that I bring back the birthday fundraiser this year. The idea is that the fandom comes together and instead of giving gifts raises as much money as they can for charity.
Benedict has chosen three charities that he would like any funds raised to go to:
MOAS: Migrant Offshore Aid Station are a charity dedicated to saving lives at sea by providing professional search and rescue to people who are in distress. They continue to do heroic work saving lives when governments have either been lacking or short on resources. They are currently saving lives between Libya and Italy but in the past have worked on the route between Lesvos and Turkey and even South Asia. They have doctors onboard and drones to find sinking vessels and work with the authorities to coordinate.
Lesvos Solidarity: Lesvos Solidarity is an open refugee camp based in ex- Pikpa camp in Mytilene, Lesvos. It is a self-organised, autonomous space run by volunteers and is built on the principle of solidarity. They take the most vulnerable- children, pregnant women, disabled, injured, babies, shipwreck survivors, traumatised, elderly and amputees to name but a few examples. It’s an extraordinary place and has been a beacon of stability and calm even in the most chaotic times. They are fiercely independent and treat the refugees with respect, creating a safe environment in which they can provide medical care and food to those in need. They even send food, supplies and blankets to other parts of the island and regions when they have a surplus.
Refugee Support Network: help young refugees, unaccompanied minors and survivors of trafficking to build more hopeful futures through education.
At the end of the fundraiser the funds will be split between the 3 charities.
If you can do give a small donation. These charities do such amazing work. You can donate from anywhere in the world.
A new trailer has been released for The Hollow Crown: The War of the Roses. Set to air in May on BBC 2 The Hollow Crown: The War of the Roses are directed by acclaimed theatre director Dominic Cooke and comprises Henry VI Parts I & II and Richard III.
Benedict Cumberbatch plays Richard III who we first see appear at the beginning of Henry VI (and his ability to make himself look some 20 years younger is quite astonishing!). The series also features Tom Sturridge, Sophie Okenedo, Keeley Hawes and Dame Judi Dench.
The trailer is below:
Don’t forget Benedict also appears as part of Shakespeare Live tomorrow evening as part of the #Shakespeare400 celebrations. Shakespeare Live is on BBC 2 at 8:3o pm (and broadcast to cinemas in the UK and Europe via Picturehouse Cinemas.) US fans can see it in cinemas on 23 May 2016 re-named The Shakespeare Show. Tickets available via Fathom Events
Last night the Doctor Strange trailer premiered exclusively on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Doctor Strange tells the origin story of Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) a brilliant surgeon, who after being horribly injured in a car accident loses his career before discovering a world of magic and mysticism.
Directed by Scott Derrickson this teaser trailer gave audiences their first glimpse of Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One and Rachel McAdams. As well as showcasing Benedict’s American accent! The first teaser is below. It looks amazing and we can’t wait for more footage to be released!!
Sherlock series 4 has started filming! Benedict Cumberbatch (a man clearly with no need of sleep or rest!) flew straight from New York where he has just wrapped filming Doctor Strange to Cardiff for the Sherlock series 4 read through!
Sherlock will return to screens (likely in early 2017) with three brand-new episodes promising laughter, tears, shocks, surprises and extraordinary cases …
Series four begins with the nation’s favourite detective, the mercurial Sherlock Holmes, back once more on British soil, as Doctor Watson and his wife Mary prepare for their biggest ever challenge – becoming parents for the first time.
Benedict Cumberbatch said he was “genuinely thrilled to be back filming Sherlock with all the cast and crew. I can’t wait for everyone to see season four. But you will have to wait… though not for long… And it will be worth it.”
The first of the three feature length episodes will be directed by Rachel Talalay, who has worked as a director, producer, and professor in film and television for more than 25 years having previously directed Doctor Who,The Flash and The Wind In The Willows.
Co-creators, writers and executive producers Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss say: “Sherlock series four – here we go again! Whatever else we do, wherever we all go, all roads lead back to Baker Street – and it always feels like coming home. Ghosts of the past are rising in the lives of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson bringing adventure, romance and terror in their wake. This is the story we’ve been telling from the beginning. A story about to reach its climax…”
Sue Vertue, Executive Producer, Hartswood Films says: “It’s taken a while to gather everyone together for series four but I can confidently say I think it will be well worth the wait!”
Doctor Strange has finally wrapped filming! It finished shooting on 3 April after a final weekend of shooting in New York. Benedict Cumberbatch (who plays Stephen Strange), Chiwetel Ejiofor and Mads Mikkelsen were all spotted on set. While Benedict and Chiwetel had been spotted filming in Nepal previously the New York shoot gave us our first glimpses of Mads Mikkelsen in action. His character has not yet been revealed.
Congratulations to Benedict Cumberbatch who was today nominated for an Olivier Award for best actor for his role in Hamlet at the Barbican centre. Benedict is nominated alongside Sir Kenneth Branagh, Adrian Lester, the newly Oscar winning Mark Rylance and Kenneth Cranham. Benedict previously won an Olivier Award for best actor in 2011 for Frankenstein– an honour he shared with Jonny Lee Miller.
Hamlet was nominated for four Olivier Awards overall including best play revival, best set design for Es Devlin and best sound design.
The awards are announced on 3 April at a ceremony at the Royal Opera House.
The awards will be streamed live in Covent Garden where there will be live performances to enjoy in the Piazza. ITV will have extended highlights of the ceremony available to view later that evening or you can listen live to the ceremony on Mellow Magic. Finally Youtube will screen the ceremony in full for international audiences.
Letters Live is returning to Freemasons Hall from 10th to the 15th March 2016. Inspired by Letters of Note, the bestselling anthology compiled by Shaun Usher, and To the Letterby Simon Garfield, Letters Live is a series of curated, live events that celebrate the enduring power of literary correspondence. Each evening features a surprise cast of readers which this year includes Benedict Cumberbatch, Gillian Anderson, Olivia Colman, Jude Law, Louise Brealey, Dominic West, Sir Ian McKellen & many more.
We have a pair of tickets to give away to one lucky winner. To enter simply send us an email (NB: competition is now closed)
A winner will be chosen at random after the competition closes (closing date this Thursday at midnight). Competition is open worldwide but the winner must be able to attend Letters Live on any of the dates above.