What do Sherlock Holmes, Smaug and Richard III all have in common? They're certainly not the most likeable of characters but Benedict Cumberbatch plays all with his incredible nonchalance and quick wit. Yet with Cumberbatch constantly on television or simply on our minds, what do we actually know about the 37-year-old British actor?
In the space of four years, Benedict Cumberbatch has won the heart of the British nation, revitalised a classic literary detective and been voted the sexiest man alive by Empire. Cumberbatch may be the nation's latest obsession but what do we really know about the 37-year-old actor?
Benedict Cumberbatch certainly has our attention.
Here are 5 facts you probably didn't know:
1) He Was Abducted
Cumberbatch was abducted in 2005 whilst in KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. Whilst filming To the Ends of the Earth, Cumberbatch was driving in Durban along with two friends when the car's front tyres went flat. As the three friends were attempting to repair the tyres, six men appeared and tied up Cumberbatch and his two companions before driving all three into the middle of nowhere.
Cumberbatch described his experience to THR and explained how he appreciated the value of life following the incident. He stated that such an experience "really, really enriches your values in life," adding "it's incredibly important."
2) He Can Marry You
In 2013, Cumberbatch officiated the same-sex wedding of his friends. The Sherlock actor may only have been ordained on the internet but he was more than happy to officiate the ceremony. At the time Cumberbatch told the THR: "Two friends of mine are getting married, and they really wanted a friend to perform the ceremony. So I went on the Internet and got ordained. I really know how to do weddings now! And I'm available!"
3) He Does Shakespeare And Sesame Street
Cumberbatch will be appearing in the second series of films for The Hollow Crown franchise and is set to play Richard III. Although Shakespeare may not be for everyone, Cumberbatch certainly impressed his younger fans when he appeared on Sesame Street earlier this year, alongside Count Von Count and Murray.
The British actor can tackle anything from Shakespeare to Sherlock to Sesame Street.
4) He Reads Love Letters - Aloud!
They may not be his own letters but we can all pretend! Cumberbatch attended the Hay Literary Festival and appeared alongside a group of his fellow actors in order to read out historic love letters. As the Independent reports, Cumberbatch read a series of letters between a World War II Signalman and his sweetheart at home. Whilst on a more tragic note, he read a letter written by explorer Robert Scott to his wife when he knew he was going to die in the Antarctic in 1912.
5) He's A Dragon
Many people are surprised to discover Cumberbatch is the voice of Smaug, the fearsome dragon in The Hobbit trilogy. He also lends his voice to the Necromancer, a shady character we have yet to come into direct contact with but will eventually become the Sauron we all know and dislike.
Cumberbatch's Sherlock has won over even the harshest of critics.