Tom Hiddleston is a “bore” and should “lay off my patch” jokes Benedict Cumberbatch

Sherlock star jokes that Hiddleston should stop making impressions of Shere Khan as that is his area of expertise - and reveals who beat him in the Harrow reading competition

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Tom Hiddleston is a “bore” for trying to compete with him over his voice-work says Benedict Cumberbatch.

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In an interview with Radio 5 Live presenter Simon Mayo this morning, Cumberbatch responded with mock-scorn when Mayo mentioned Hiddleston’s impression of Shere Khan – the man-eating tiger from Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book – when he appeared on his show.

As any Cumberbatch fan will tell you, the Sherlock star is voicing Shere Khan in Andy Serkis’ Jungle Book remake.

“That old bore,” said Cumberbatch when Hiddleston’s name came up.

On the subject of his Shere Khan voice, Cumberbatch joked: “Oh for Christ’s sake, can’t he just leave off my patch for one split second?”

Asked if his version is better than Hiddleston’s, the star replied: “Clearly. I got the role. What more proof is there than that?” 

Adopting a more serious demeanour, he added: “Look I don’t like competing with Tom. He is too much of a dear friend. There are loads of friends, including him…we will have crossovers with classical roles and reprisals.”

In the 5 Live interview Cumberbatch also revealed who beat him in the Harrow reading competition judged by Stephen Fry. In his memoir More Fool Me, Fry recounted that Cumberbatch came second but failed to mention who won.

Today Cumberbatch said that it was his classmate Nick Luck, who is now a sports presenter for Channel 4.

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“I think it was Nick Luck, the racing presenter of Channel 4. Nick often won the Lady Bourchier reading competition.”