Benedict Cumberbatch talks 'The Hobbit,' Smaug, answers fans (Video)
Benedict Cumberbatch lends his baritone voice to the dragon Smaug in the upcoming film "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug."
The "Sherlock" and "Fifth Estate" actor recently talked to OTRC.com about the "movie magic" behind his character and he also answered a few fan questions OTRC.com solicited from fans on Twitter. Check out videos from Cumberbatch's interview above.
"It was like movie magic," Cumberbatch said about seeing his character on the big screen for the first time. "It was extraordinary, because you know, you do your thing, and like you say it is like magic in a way because you extrapolate something of the animal."
"I went to zoos to have a look at lizards and stuff and then I went to town just to try to physicalize something in the mocap stage -- the motion capture stage -- and then do the voice work for both characters, the necromancer and for Smaug the dragon," he added. "And then you see it on the big screen and it's just taken to a whole other level."
Mia Johnson (@xmiaheart) asked, "What was the most challenging part about playing Smaug?"
"Working on my own, but a part of that there weren't many," Cumberbatch said. "I mean, it was just, it was trying to imagine all the time what the whole scene would be because the script changed, it's evolved over a long period of time, even though my involvement was only about 8 days maximum. I got it fairly lightly compared to the others, which I feel a bit guilty about because he's a character of great impact, but at the same time yeah, I think working in isolation and not having Martin [Freeman] in the room was pretty hard. "
Yasammez (@Yassammez) asked, "Did he go back to his own childhood memories a lot for his portrayal of Smaug now?"
"So my childhood memory of this is fantastic -- is my dad who read this to me when I was a kid. I was really young. I went away to school when I was about 8, so it must've been before that," Cumberbatch recalled. "And yet I remember it very, very vividly because he's an actor, a really good actor, and he fleshed out all the characters, did fantastic voices and just created this imaginary world that made me desperate to start really getting into reading myself. He really opened the door for the power of books and the imagination that kind of comes from both the author and the recipient, so I kind of owe it to him really this is kind of my, it's me honoring him."
"He created the first kind of Smaug in my head, I guess, and the rest of it I sort of led on and then Weta did their job, but yeah, it's kind of, it's his fault that I'm here," he said.
Claire Taylor (@ClaireTaylor_) asked, "You get to travel a lot during your work - Where is your favorite place in the world?"
While Cumberbatch named places like Tokyo, in the end, he said, "One of my favorite places in the world is my bed, at home, in England. I love that place very much."
"The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" hits theaters on Dec. 13.Reporting by Cari Skillman of KABC Television, which produces the nationally syndicated entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).