Benedict Cumberbatch recalls being kidnapped
Benedict Cumberbatch recalls being kidnapped in South Africa in 2004, when he was held at gunpoint before being thrown into the back of a car. Credits: Marvel Studios, Unsplash

Benedict Cumberbatch recalls being kidnapped in South Africa many years ago, back in 2004. The Doctor Strange actor was held at gunpoint before being thrown into the back of a car, with his shoelaces bound to his wrists.

Benedict Cumberbatch recalls being kidnapped in South Africa

Speaking to Marc Maron on the WTF podcast, Benedict Cumberbatch recalled a harrowing incident that happened to him and his co-actors while he was filming the BBC miniseries To the Ends of the Earth in 2004.

The 45-year-old Doctor Strange actor shared that he was on a trip with his co-actors on their day off to learn scuba diving and while they were heading back at night, their car broke down because of a punctured tire. The group then stopped by the side of the road before they were suddenly ambushed by another group of armed men. Cumberbatch added that they were then thrown into the back of a car and at one point, his shoelaces were even bound to his wrists.

The kidnappers eventually left them alone after they gave them money and cards, but the ordeal lasts for two and a half hours because the card needed to be taken to a bank machine first to withdraw money. The hijackers then left with the actors’ belongings, but the group was still able to call for help.

Cumberbatch describes himself as lucky to have survived the kidnapping and emerge unscathed, alive and well. And although the whole ordeal sounded like a scene straight out of the movies, he said that it was life-changing for him and it inspired him to live a life less than ordinary.

Started his career in theater

Benedict Cumberbatch’s traumatizing ordeal took place during the infancy of his career and before his rise to fame. He started his acting career in the theater scene of London before making the move to movies and TV shows, where he took on roles for projects like Sherlock, Atonement, and The Imitation Game, give garnered a Best Actor award at the 2014 Oscars.

More recently, he is better known for his portrayal of Doctor Stephen Strange in the MCU‘s Doctor Strange movies, as well as featuring heavily in the Avengers movies. His next appearance will be in the upcoming Spider-Man: No Way Home, where he will be reprising his role as the Sorcerer Supreme alongside Tom Holland‘s Peter Parker/Spider-Man. He also has another Doctor Strange movie coming up in 2022 as part of Phase 4 of the MCU.

Thank God nothing happened to Benedict Cumberbatch during his traumatizing ordeal in South Africa all those years ago.

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