Julian Assange Resentful Towards 'The Fifth Estate' As WikiLeaks Posts Disapproving Letter To Benedict Cumberbatch

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Benedict Cumberbatch portrayed WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, in DreamWorks's biopic, 'The Fifth Estate'. The film follows Assange's attempts to expose classified information of corrupt corporations and secret government files, by publishing them on his website, WikiLeaks.

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Benedict Cumberbatch protrays Julian Assange in 'The Fifth Estate'

Mr Assange disapproves of the film and the anti-secrecy organisation posted a letter on WikiLeaks, that he wrote to Benedict Cumberbatch asking him to "reconsider [his] involvement in this enterprise."

The letter was a response from Cumberbatch's efforts to meet with Assange prior to filming began, it is dated from January 15th 2013 and predicts the film will "distort events and subtract from public understanding."

Assange praises the British star's acting ability but feels the film will only result in a negative backlash, he writes, "I believe you are a good person, but I do not believe that this film is a good film. I do not believe it is going to be positive for me or the people I care about. I believe that it is going to be overwhelmingly negative for me and the people I care about."

Watch 'The Fifth Estate' trailer here

The WikiLeaks founder also asks the 37 year-old to step away from the project, "I believe that you should reconsider your involvement in this enterprise, consider the consequences of your cooperation with a project that vilifies and marginalises a living political refugee to the benefit of an entrenched, corrupt and dangerous state."

He also feels the film is based on "a deceitful book by someone who has a vendetta against [him] and [his] organisation".

The letter finishes with Assange turning down Benedict's offer to meet one another as it reads, "By meeting with you, I would validate this wretched film, and endorse the talented, but debauched, performance that the script will force you to give," adding, "I must, with inexpressible regret, turn it down".

'The Fifth Estate' will hit theatres October 18th 2013.

the fifth estate
The biopic depicts the ascension of the anti-secrecy organisation 'WikiLeaks'


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Emma Goldstein's picture

Emma Goldstein

Director Bill Condon has criticized Julian Assange for calling "The Fifth Estate" propaganda. A poster for the film shows Assange's face with the word TRAITOR stamped over it. Treason is betrayal of one's country. What allegiance does an Australian citizen owe the government of the United States? Propaganda is the deliberate spreading of injurious ideas or information. Doesn't it seem likely that a poster with the word "traitor" over someone's face would negatively influence public opinion?

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