It seems like Benedict Cumberbatch is starting to get a taste for biopics of socially awkward computer geniuses who change the world. The "Sherlock" star is currently filming "The Fifth Estate," in which he's playing Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, and now he's lining up another hot role, in the shape of tragic mathematician Alan Turing.
Deadline reports that the British actor, next to be seen as the villain in "Star Trek Into Darkness," is in "deep discussions" to star in "The Imitation Game," which Black Bear Pictures are backing. The film is a biopic of Turing, who helped to crack the Enigma code during World War II, and paved the way for modern computing. But he was prosecuted for homosexuality in the 1950s, causing him to be chemically castrated, and he eventually killed himself with a cyanide-laced apple (which gave the name and logo to Steve Jobs' computing company decades later).
The script, by Graham Moore, topped the 2011 Black List, and was initially set up at Warner Bros, with Leonardo DiCaprio and David Yates among the talent interested. "The Disapperarance Of Alice Creed" director J Blakeson landed the gig, but Warners dropped the project, and Blakeson was replaced by"Headhunters" helmer Morten Tyldum. Now the film's gearing up, with financing fully in place, and the presence of the increasingly hot Cumberbatch is sure to get the film close to production.
There's no firm date for production yet, but with Cumberbatch due to film season three of "Sherlock" once he's done with his blonde Assange wig, it's hard to see it rolling before the summer. But that's likely to mean that it'll be well placed for the 2014 awards season when the time comes. Anyway, this is potentially casting so perfect it's amazing it didn't happen sooner, and it certainly points towards an extremely promising film whenever it arrives.