Benedict Cumberbatch defends the Khan secrecy in J.J. Abrams' Star Trek Into Darkness
Yesterday J.J. Abrams admitted it was probably a mistake to keep the identity of Benedict Cumberbatch’s character in STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS a secret, and now the actor has shared his thoughts on how his identity was handled for the film. Cumberbatch recently talked to, and IGN he says he was fine with the secrecy, and that the character’s reveal was exciting to those who were unaware of whom he was playing in STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS.
IGN: J.J. Abrams earlier was doing press for his book, and he brought up Khan, and he said that in hindsight, maybe doing the secrecy around it, that whole campaign to keep Khan’s identity a secret, maybe it was a mistake. What are your thoughts on it?
Cumberbatch: What a dickhead! (laughs) I mean, the amount of times we had to lie for him and keep secrets, the amount of times I had to not talk about it being my character. God damn him. No, I love him. Maybe, I don’t know, it’s logistics, isn’t it? I don’t know if it’s a bad or good thing, it was his call. I was fine with it. I liked the idea of…the intention was to have a reveal in the audience that was going to be thrilling, where people go, “Oh, really?” and that worked to an extent, cause not everybody knew what they were in for when they went into the theater, and some people wanted to join in that thrill of seeing it, and experiencing it in the theater rather than having it spoiled for them in reviews, or got internet gossip or traders that gave everything away. So, who knows? For those people, I would say it was a good thing. And for anyone else who wants to find out, you know, there are always ways of finding out, and people have their hunches. But, I sat in a couple of theaters, and both times it was like, “Yeah! Oh, what!?” there was just a verbal and physical reaction to it, so I was like, “It kind of works.”
Interesting that Benedict Cumberbatch says it was Abrams’ call to keep Khan’s identity secret, but yesterday the director said it was the studio’s decision. Regardless of who made the call though, I think it’s safe to say it wasn’t a good decision. I personally didn’t mind it, but it certainly rubbed some fans the wrong way, and it probably would have been better if J.J. Abrams and company had been upfront about who Cumberbatch was playing in STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS.