Benedict Cumberbatch: My niece directed my ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

The internet wanted to see him in a white T-shirt, so Cumberbatch complied...


Benedict Cumberbatch’s ice bucket challenge was quite something. We’d had former presidents, Vogue editors, sports stars and more dousing themselves in icy water – but the Sherlock actor’s effort stood out for it’s not one, but five brushes with the bucket. 


Although, it turns out Cumberbatch isn’t the only brains behind the video. “I chose all the shots and rehearsed it with my niece – who acted as my director of photography!” he tells Time Out. “The first time we tried it she’d stopped filming and I had to do it all over again. I got a cut above my eyebrow from the ice.”

The Sherlock star also revealed the inspiration behind his attire in the final frame which saw him brave a soaking while wearing a white t-shirt. 

“The internet was asking when I was going to do it and if I’d wear a white t-shirt apparently. And I actually did wear a white t-shirt for the last one, which they [the fans] were apparently quite happy about, so I was saving the internet!”

The actor, 38, added that – despite the craze dominating social media last month – he was not aware of its existence until his agent rung him about his nominations.


“I was all: ice bucket what? And I was in the middle of doing Shere Khan [in Ron Howard’s The Jungle Book] and some voice work for The Hobbit and something else. Then I cottoned on to what it was and what it was in aid of and I thought: I need to do this properly. I was late and had been nominated more than once so I did it a few times.”