Sunday, August 24, 2014

Quote #6 - My Favorite Movie Hero (by Benedict Cumberbatch)

Courtesy AMPAS

In preparation for the 2013 Academy Awards telecast, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences ("a professional honorary organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of motion pictures - Wikipedia) created a gallery of actors who would be presenting Oscars during the telecast. Benedict Cumberbatch would be paired with Jennifer Garner during the program, and, earlier that evening, showed his prowess at making the most of his time on-camera for fun by photobombing U2 on the red carpet.

Curiously enough, the whimsy and welling up we saw on display that night (witness his reaction during the acceptance speech of 12 Years A Slave co-star and Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o as Best Supporting Actress), may be all some Americans know about him, until they looked at the Oscars' online gallery of photographs and quotes.

Benedict's quote offers insight into what moves and motivates the actor  - at least to my mind, because it connects his love of art, language, the human spirit - and performing. Given the characters he's chosen to play and the causes he chooses to promote, it seems no coincidence that his favorite hero in film - unlike, say, Kristen Bell's choice of Ace Ventura (for his care of animals) - was someone quite real, quite remarkable and quietly fighting to LIVE, despite circumstances beyond his control.

Courtesy AMPAS 
While there was controversy about how events differed between the 1997 autobiography by Jean-Dominique Bauby, the editor-in-chief of French Elle who used his left eye to dictate his story after suffering a stroke at age 42 that resulted in locked-in syndrome and the award-winning foreign language film released in 2008,  what remains is a moving story about an all-too-real human being going about the business of living, when life presents a bill for immediate - and cruel - collection. Cumberbatch refers to the 2008 film, but there is also a documentary filmed during Bauby's hospitalization, of which there is an excerpt on YouTube.

The autobiography and movie are available on Amazon (Instant Video free to Amazon Prime members), and an audiobook version is available on Audible.

Below is the trailer for the foreign language film, which was produced in part by Kathleen Kennedy (also one of the executive producers for War Horse which featured Benedict Cumberbatch in a supporting role, and The Adventures of TinTin, with a cast that included Cumberbatch co-stars Simon Pegg (Star Trek Into Darkness) and Andy Serkis (The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug and The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies), who will direct Cumberbatch in Jungle Book: Origins) - oh, and U2, whom Cumberbatch photobombed? Their song was used in the soundtrack for this film, too.

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly - Trailer from The Kennedy/Marshall Company on Vimeo.

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