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Benedict Cumberbatch: It’s “weak” to blame fans for the pressures of celebrity

The Doctor Strange and Avengers star says he loves his “generous and humbling” fans – even if there IS a lot of Sherlock shipping

Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Sherlock Holmes (BBC)
Published: Tuesday, 17th April 2018 at 5:30 pm

Sherlock star Martin Freeman recently made headlines for complaining about the fans of the hit BBC detective series, saying that making Sherlock is “not fun anymore” due to the high expectations of viewers, many of whom also want his character John Watson to be in a romantic relationship with Benedict Cumberbatch’s titular Sherlock Holmes.


“There was a chunk of people who just knew it was going to end with us getting together,” the actor told The Telegraph.

“Me and Ben, we have literally never, never played a moment like lovers. We ain’t f***ing lovers.”

Now, Cumberbatch himself has touched on the issue, assuring us that he hadn't really been bothered by too much of the JohnLock shipping himself. “I wasn't really aware of that, no,” he told

Instead, he suggested that his own experience with fans has been more positive – and scorned the idea that the pressure of fan expectations could make filmmaking less enjoyable, suggesting that it was “pretty weak” to blame the difficulties of storytelling on the people who receive the story, be that fans of Sherlock or viewers of the Marvel film franchise.

“It's the responsibility of the storytellers to manage that, really,” Cumberbatch said.

“And I think, you know, it's pretty weak to blame that on fans. You're either along for the ride or not, and I think to be kowtowing would, in some cases, disappoint fans – so...I don't think it can all rest on that.

“I think there are more people responsible than the people receiving what you're working on.”

Cumberbatch went on to discuss his experiences more specifically dealing with the fans of the Marvel movies, which he says he was well prepared for by his years of Sherlock fame.

“Maybe the volume's up a little," he told us. "I don't know – I don't pay too much attention to it.

“I just enjoy the graft, and I enjoy the results, and the whole fan thing is sort of mind-boggling, and pretty f***ing generous and wonderful and humbling to be honest.

“Maybe it's because I'm a newbie, but I've got off lightly if there is sort of, the darker side of fandom out there. It hasn't really affected me too much.”

“The [official Disney convention] D23 was a huge sort of thing like 'Oh my God, validation for what we tried to achieve,’” he concluded.

“There was this roaring ovation when I stepped on stage and I was like 'I've got something right.' It's strange. Which is great because it matters to people and it matters to me that we deliver. So, fingers crossed that will continue.”

Assuming Doctor Strange actually survives Infinity War and finally gets his own sequel, we’re sure it will.


Avengers: Infinity War will be released in UK cinemas on the 26th April


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