Benedict Cumberbatch Flinches When Asked About Recent Star Trek Reports + More Cumby News

There has been a lot of talk about what role Benedict Cumberbatch is playing in the recently wrapped Star Trek sequel. The actor is the subject of a new feature in the LA times and he apparently "flinches" at being asked about the latest reports, however one of the film’s producers is willing to talk about the Cumberbatch’s "brooding intensity." Details below plus the latest Cumberbatch news [NOTE: article discusses recent spoilers].


Cumberbatch ‘flinches’ at Khan question + Burk talks about "brooding intensity" 

The LA Times Hero Complex has a profile with Benedict Cumberbatch, focusing on Season 2 of Sherlock on PBS (which premièred on Sunday to 3 million viewers). There is some talk of Trek and the recent reports here and elsewhere, but Benedict isn’t talking and seems to have really taken JJ Abrams cone of silence seriously, here is an excerpt:

The notoriously secretive director J.J. Abrams is keeping the film beneath a cloaking device, but the Internet is certain that Cumberbatch’s role is the tyrannical Khan — Ricardo Montalbán’s famed role on 1960s TV and the 1982 feature film “The Wrath of Khan.” Cumberbatch flinched at the topic, as if he isn’t allowed to hear the question, much less utter an answer.

However Star Trek producer Bryan Burk did speak on the record about the actor, saying:

"Benedict has an incredible presence and brooding intensity. To say he’s a welcome addition to the ‘Star Trek’ cast is an understatement; he’s an actor that truly captivates his audience. "

Benedict Cumberbatch (LA Times)

More Cumberbatch: Voted Sexiest + Inspired Misspellings + Watch Sherlock Online

Tune in to PBS on Sunday to see the second episode of Sherlock Season 2 "The Hounds of the Baskerville."

And on Sunday May 20th the thrid and final episode "The Reichenbach Fall" airs. And here here is that preview:


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Just admit that it’s Khan already!

Why is everyone so keen on Khaaaan. Hollywood is empty of any new ideas dont ecourage them to be lazy and cheap. Im off to have a beer in the engine room

Please no Khan. Let’s hope it’s a new story that covers new ground….

Smoking is so last century!

I would prefer no Khan myself, to me Khan has been done and done wel, there is nothing different you can do with a story tha in my mind was one of TOS’s best.

However, although I am disappointed in this decison I will wait and see and I am still looking forward to the new film. it’s just I wsh some original ideas would come back to Hollywood.

I would be very pleased if all that talk about Cumberbatch being Khan had just been a big fat hoax…

Sad to see that smoking picture. Nice shot though it is, Smoking is not big, and it is not clever.

first, let me be clear that i do not want it to be Khan.

having said that, i would like to add that the split of the timeline from the last movie could entertain some uniquely new ideas about what happens to Khan and Kirk when the crew first meets him. Since the production team took such good care of our bridge crew when they revamped the series in the last movie, why would we be so worried about what they do with the character Khan?

Have been excited as soon as I heard Cucumberbatch was playing the villain, cant think of anyone better.

But I will be so disapointed if it is Khan

So, now we’re in for an entire redo of every story from original Star Trek series save from a different time line? Come to think of it that might be exciting on some levels. The cage, menagerie. For The World is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky. This SIde of Paradise. A Private Little War. Spock’s Brain, well maybe not. We shall see, I guess.


I have said if they can do what Nolan did with the Joker, in which Heath Ledger was different from Jack Nicholson that I don’t compare the two then that will be cool because I don’t want to compare them as to me you can’t beat Ricardo Montalban,

But the other thing that I feel is that I thought the alternate universe twist of the last movie was to allow the writers to tell new stories without the shackles of canon getting in their way.

Although I think it has fallen victim to the latest Hollywood regime I still think it will be a cool film.

I guess Khan is a bit like The Joker to the Bat.

So … if he is in the next flick, maybe quite rightly so.

Khan is a true nemesis that Kirk, especially, must face to truly beat his ‘real’ Kobayashi Maru. … No Khan = unproven / untested.

Anyway, despite my initial objections of revisiting the character, – in between ST2 & now there have probably been hundreds of episodes on TV without Khan … so maybe time to revisit him eh?

BC certainly has the ‘mana’ (earned respect) to be Khan from my point of view.

And I have to admit some excitement at the potential conflict ….

Anyway …. bring it on, can’t wait …


BC will be good as I think he is a brilliant actor, but he is following in Ricardo Montalban’s shoes.

And to me me you can’t beat Ricardo. I am sorry but Wrath of Khan is a movie you just can’t beat.

THis is why I hope he is different to the point that I don’t compare the two, like Nicholson and Ledger.

It never even entered my mind that Cumberbatch might be Khan when his involvement in Star Trek 2(2) was announced. It would be a real disappointment if Khan is the main villain, despite how entertaining the movie might end up being. We were sold on the idea this movie would get back to the exploratory nature of Star Trek, but if we put in another villain out to destroy everything (again) that just HAPPENS to be Khan, it’s going to seem stale. We grew out of certain childrens’ stories, because they lacked complexity and were formulaic. I find that there are very few films I’m enjoying these days, even when the acting and directing is top notch. There’s nothing new under the sun, but for goodness sakes…try.


I think the problem these days Hollywood is playing it safe rather than telling good stories. Which is why we are getting more reboots and remakes.

They know a redo of Khan will get bums on seats and that probably more Trek style stories would not sit well with the mainstream audience.

I was rewatching The Doomsday Maachine on Sun and was thinking how cool it would be to do that in a movie.

I absolutely agree. … love both versions, both good actors … completely different tones & ‘eras/settings’ to.

As a long term fan I perhaps need to be flexible. I struggle with this,but am grateful to see new adventures.

For me, a lot of the appeal for Star Trek was the nostalgia of seeing the original actors (including the Enterprise) from when I was in nappies back again in the 80s/90s. There will never be another Spock for me … or Captain Kirk … Mr Nimoy & Shatner are it, can’t help it. Hey, in a similar way there will never be another Picard.

I’m trusting that the next movie will be really good & fun. But, I’ll miss some of that old black magic … & will appreciate the new Star Trek variation on Star Wars.

sorry, meant “try to” appreciate the new Star Trek variation on Star Wars.

I think its time to dispense with the pretense and just admit its a “Khanberbatch” story. Now we just need stooges at ILM to sneak any CG renderings of the Botany Bay….

I think that Mr. Cumberbatch is so very talented that whomever he is portraying, he will mesmerize us all!

It’s a shame that Cumbersnatch would have a photo romanticizing smoking. I bet Khan never smoked, uh, except maybe at the end of TWOK.

Count me as one of the people disappointed about Khan. There’s so much of the Star Trek Universe I would like to see explored without re-hashing the villain from the greatest Star Trek Movie ever made. Let the classics be classics IMHO. This will never come off as well as the Wrath of Khan. Mybe I’m wrong. I hope so. Don’t get me wrong through, I’ll still be there on opening night.

I’m bothered more about the return of
Khan than Cumberbatch holding a cigarette. Smoke’em if you want. Too any buy bodies passing judgement.

I have fate in JJ and his crew. I doubt it’ll be a simple rehash of TWOK. Granted, Nero wasn’t world’s best villain, but that was JJ felt they had to focus more on the origin story of the Enterprise crew than on that of the villain’s. But the depth is there in the character of Nero. Especially when you read the Countdown/Nero comics (which the movie writers pitched in on).

I think they’ll be able to surprise us by the role Cumberbatch will play. Perhaps this Khan starts out as an enemy but grows into an ally of some sort against a bigger foe (Peter Weller’s character/Klingons). At the very least we have a great cast of talented actors to play the heroes and villains, so I feel confident.

People, people, people. You’ve got it all wrong. The pose, the hair, indeed everything about that photo reveals the true identity of Cumberbatch’s role in the Star Trek sequel.

Even the cigarette. Especially the cigarette.

Cumberbatch isn’t playing Khan. He’s playing Don Draper.

That’s right, the Mad Man himself will be defrosted in the 23rd Century and out-Kirks Kirk, leaving a misty haze of cigarette smoke, Martinis and exhausted Orion women right across the Federation.

Just look at this trailer: It’s obvious Kirk in TOS was channelling The Don all along.

Ah, fellow Trekkers, how blind we were. Who do you think the young James T Kirk’s role model was ? Now you know.

This is why JJ and Bob Orci have been obsessively secretive about the sequel. The movie shows Kirk realising his sci-fi franchise is about to be stolen from under his nose. So, in a fit of Denny Cranesque jealousy, Kirk decides there can be only one leading man and that Draper needs to be sent back to the 1960s at all cost.

Of course, Kirk was constantly beaten up so badly in ST09 that he doesn’t want to embarrass himself all over again, so he gets Spock to do the dirty work for him. In between landing punches on Spock, sipping whisky and seducing Uhura (all in the same scene), Draper wonders why Spock is suddenly trying to give him a shoulder massage when the Vulcan attempts the “neck pinch” we’ve all seen in the leaked photos.

I bet there’s even a scene showing a horrified Kirk, shaking with rage as he realises his title as the interstellar icon of smoothness has been snaked by Draper, and screaming “Daaaahn !!”

You heard it here first.

The Khan to Kirk = Joker to Batman is a joke. No one in the wider audience makes that connection, very few trekkies think that and there is no basis for thinking that.

Khan only ever appeared on two occasions. The first not a particularly great episode and the second a great movie because it focused on Kirk’s journey.

Without the needed rage Khan is a pretty boring character. If it is about rage then we have just had three movies about a villain with anger issues. Shinzon and Nero (both modeled on Khan) and now Khan.

If it’s not Khan then the silence is only about getting people talking. A pointless exercise as the only people talking are those already invested in the next movie.

If it is Khan that is a bad move in my opinion, if it is not then the silence is disrespectful and arrogant to those who do really want and now expect that character. Especially given that there is no real benefit for not saying anything.

#12: No, Khan is definitely NOT Star Trek’s Joker. I don’t know why people say that. Kirk matched wits with him only twice, and in both cases, the battle was short-lived and Kirk won. He’s a small chapter in Kirk’s life, not a recurring nemesis. Great character, no doubt. Kirk’s Joker? No way–that would be the Klingons.

I’m pretty sure that I spoke out against having Khan in the film, hoping for something new. I still feel the same way, but at the same time I’m so thrilled about Cumberbatch’s casting that I’m actually beginning to like the idea.

As for the smoking question…

People who smoke smell very, very bad. It’s in their hair, their clothes and their breath. And neither cologne nor breath mints can fix it. Smokers stink. Badly. And they also endanger those around them by spewing toxic smoke. So seeing him romanticizing a cigarette is very disappointing–it means he smells badly and is a weak person.

Señoras y señores.

For reasons that will be organically explained by el señor Orci, in due time, in this timeline, there never was a Khan Noonien Singh.

The SHOCKING reason why “the powers that be” so much desired to cast an Hispanic actor as the main villain, is that, in this reality, the leader of the genetically engineered supermen is, and, always has been from…Spain.

Kortés Hernán Altamirano Monroy…K.H.A.M., if you will.

People, you’ve been warned.
Get ready for…………………………



P.S. Mr. Orci, if you reply to this with: “I don’t think so.” , I’ll keep on being happy….


@24- Brilliant!
Thanks for a good laugh this am.

I am not disappointed its Khan- I have posted previously that I wanted Kirk to be tested like he was in TWOK and I wanted those themes in the next Trek.
Its seems praise for Cumby is universal and he will do a fabulous job as Khan or the vacuum cleaner salesman if that’s his part.
And Jai,
Someone has already nicked your idea and is writing some fan fic where Kirk and Draper fall for the same girl in mid sixties Manhattan and Kirk doesn’t stand a chance.
Hey maybe that’s the kind of test Kirk needs…..

All good fun. Who knows what the future holds … hopefully a good flick.

He is Khan. We all know it. So no surprise here.


Indeed, Jai @24, that was rotfully funny!
And suggests other possible villains such as…
The Evil Jamaican Augment…. MONNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!
The Evil Vulcan Sex Counselor…. PONNNNNNNNNNNNNN!
The Two-Legged Beast from Ice Planet Hoth…. TAUNTAUNNNNNNNNNNNN!
A Clone of Lon Chaney…. LONNNNNNNNNNNNNN!
Or Gary Hart’s last day as a serious candidate… FAWWWWWWWWWWN!
@Keachcick: For Star Trek 3, you should plead with the Bob to use _Enemy Within_ as the base. Two Kirks! Twice as much Pine! :) And we could say… “First he defeated the evil Nero and saved the world…. Next he defeated the evil Khan, and saved the galaxy…. and now… he must save himself! KIRRRRRRRRRRRRK!”

Shoot, my fake tags of {radio announcer voice on} and {off} didn’t show up.

I basically agree with you. For me my disappointment was not worrying WHAT they would do with Khan but THAT they were using Khan (IF indeed they are). Now that I’m over the initial (and hopefully unwarranted) blow of the ‘news’, I’m trusting again that we’ll get a satisfying Trek film. I’m holding on to the fact that the Kelvin scene is one of my favorite Trek scenes ever, if not my VERY favorite of all time!

And MY GOD!! What is it going to take to get Star Trek back on TV?!?

People..I think we should just embrace the khan…it’s all wrapped up and they ain’t gonna change it now….instead of the character…focus on the interpretation by Cumby…I’m getting to like his Sherlock a lot..he is a fine actor and a great addition to the TREK…He can’t be any worse that Sybok, Sorin, or those goofy face stretchers from Insurrection!..

All of our complaining over……NO KHAN.. will not keep me from seeing it 9 or 10 times like I did 3 years ago. We all complained how aweful the Enterprise looked, the steaming engine room, the constant “flairs”
Lets’ embrace whatever J.J. has done for us… I trust he will not lead us astray.. I will stay happy BobOrci!! LLAP

4000 quatloos on the newcomer not being KHAN.

He’s got to be of the other augments/supermen from the Botany Bay. No way they would try to pass him off as Khan, no matter how good his iPhone audition was. If Khan is even this movie, he quickly becomes or is already a corpse.

I’m not doubting that they seriously considered the Khan as main villain route, even up to the point of casting – look at the actors they were considering. But, I think they punted when they got their hands on C-Batch and revised the script to get Khan out of the picture early.

I’ll go even further and continue my position that he is TWOK’s Joachim. There is no firm canon as to whether or not he was part of the original crew or if he was born after the crew was banished – books and comics tell it both ways. So it’s open to interpretation.

“4000 quatloos on the newcomer not being KHAN.”

I see…..only 4000, huh?


I sure hope the new movie isn’t about Khan. I might just walk out of the theater if it is.

Khan never tested Kirk, Kirk made some minor mistakes that Khan took advantage of. Kirk found a way out of those mistakes and Khan went down.

I think that Elaan of Troyius, or City on the Edge of Forever would be a far better story. Both had deep love stories that can be identified with by both men and women with interesting subplots.

If it’s Gary Mitcheal or Lee Kelso that probably will work pretty good too, it’ll should be the first bit of emotional damage we see done to Kirk. Kirk is very sensitive to the loss of crew members and beats himself up for it.

I wanted NEW stuff. Right now there’s no reason to be sure we’re not going get exactly that.

I haven’t thought about it in a while but I’d hoped that, if anything, in this new universe we might see some of the worst of Trek revisited and ‘fixed’, made good, if you will. Not going back to the best of Trek but reimagining something like ‘Which Way to Eden’ or ‘The Omega Glory’ or even ‘Spock’s Brain’. I know, I know that’s thinking waaaaaay outside the box, as it were. But I always say “A good film can be made about anything and a bad film can be made about anything.” Call me crazy.

Bottom line is – Entertain me, intrigue me, impress me. PLEASE!

Well I should say US. It’s not all about me, me, me.
(Though it really should be!)

I keed ;-)

If he is Khan, I’m never watching another Trek from these clowns again, so lazy.

However, Bandersnatch Cumberdick is an awesome actor and I will watch him in just about anything. I just hope people realise that the greatness of Sherlock is not just BC, but an inspired production team, brlliant writing, incredible directing (THIS is how to use a steadycam) and perfect editing.

One person over commenting about Khan over at Collider suggested which I think could be a good plot, his idea was to have the Klingons find the Botany Bay destroy it and Cumberbatch would actually be Joaquin. He would be the only survivor and he would take Khan’s name and seek vengence for the deaths of his people. He didn’t mention this part but I guess Kirk and the Enterprise crew would find the wreckage of the Botany Bay and Jaquim. Maybe that was the part we saw when Spock’s was fighting Joaquin? They were on the wreckage of the Botany Bay?

“There are amazing villains throughout the Star Trek universe, as well as new villains as we did in the last film. There are a lot of directions we can go in the film and in this particular case we chose to do something that would be original and unique and different and again on paper I think we made the right choice.”

Bryan Burk

I can’t wait to see what he meant by that; my expectations are still extremely high for the sequel…despite all the Khan rumors.

@41 Good point – realize you’re going out of the box, but understand what you’re trying to say.

Keep in mind, too, that moviegoers, critics, and Trek fans alike will dismiss (sometimes savagely) a *bad* Trek movie more than they’ll *praise* a truly good one.

If the writers have chosen to do a Khan “alternate timeline” story, they’re taking a monumental calculated risk of being compared unfavorably to either Space Seed or TWOK in general and Cumberbatch to Khan in particular. Not saying they can’t produce a winner, but if that’s what they’ve done, I think the result is either a colossal success or a colossal failure – no middle ground.

For myself, yes, I’d have preferred a fresh story with no Khan redux, but “as we say on Earth, c’est la vie.” They didn’t ask me to write it :) I guess my predisposition in that vein is that you’ve worked so hard to reboot the franchise, why go to so much trouble to reinvent a character from the timeline you *just* rebooted? Seems contradictory to me, but I guess that’s my problem.

Guess we’ll just have to wait for a) more spoilers, or b) next summer.


Problem is that Joaquin (Joachim, whatever) was a young adult in the TWOK time frame, which was, supposedly 20 years (?) following Space Seed. He wouldn’t even be born yet. And the Botany Bay launched in the Prime timeline of 1996, *before* Nero, so that event should be unaffected.

I’m hoping against hope that Cumberbatch is a one-off Khan bad-guy who may be, for example, part of Khan’s crew gone renegade, or has some knowledge of the TOS timeline, and perhaps “borrows” Khan’s identity in some way in an alliance with the Klingons. That could be interesting. But Cumberbatch as just plain Khan on the Botany Bay would be a little less compelling.

We’ll see.

With ST:2009, I honestly admit that I was very disappointed to hear they were using time travel once again. Being their first movie, and understanding
that they wanted to clean the slate to tell new stories, I gave the movie a chance and ended up enjoying it. It didn’t have the depth I crave from my science fiction, but it was a very good first film. I walked away from it feeling that now they had released themselves from the shackles of Trek’s past and that we would finally tread new ground, seek out new life, etc…etc.

Then I read the rumors that they had gone back to Khan, and my heart sank to the floor. If it’s true, I won’t bother seeing the movie in the cinema. I just can’t take this rehashing anymore.

i hope he is not khan. hope he is trelane or so, but not khan. what is interesting about khan? i mean… he is strong and intelligent. or after all he thinks he is. so what? khan is boring!

45 – Thanks SoonerDave,

It’s a ‘pipe dreamy’ sorta thing but as much, ‘faith’ in the skills of the writers as well. Making good Trek from bad WOULD blow our collective minds. And make me one very happy Trekkie.

Yes smoking is gross, but its visual.