Apparently playing Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme just isn’t enough for the Internet’s boyfriend/otter cosplayer Benedict Cumberbatch, because we’ll see him in a film playing a real life World War II “war magician” in the aptly titled The War Magician.
According to Deadline, Cumberbatch is attached to star as Jasper Maskelyne, a real-life magician-turned soldier during the Second World War. The screenplay will be written by Gary Whitta (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) based off of David Fisher’s fact-based book about the magician’s life and wartime exploits. Maskelyne was a British stage magician who employed his skills in sleight of hand and misdirection to benefit the Allies in their battle against the Axis during World War II. Accounts of exactly how successful his wartime career actually was vary from person to person, and there are conflicting stories of just how useful his contributions actually were, but Maskelyne is often credited with things like using inflatable tanks to confuse the Luftwaffe on how strong Allied forces were in certain areas, camouflaging various outposts, and even making illusions that managed to conceal the Suez Canal (which is pretty damn big).
Funded by StudioCanal, the film will add to the ever-growing list of similar wartime/thriller films with Cumberbatch involved. They seem to know what they’re doing considering the recent success of that pairing.
“Both Imitation Game and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy were phenomenal successes for Studio Canal, and we are thrilled to be in business with Benedict Cumberbatch on this extraordinary project,” said StudioCanal International EVP of production Ron Halpern in a statement.
It’s safe to say that pretty much anything that Cumberbatch is involved in will see a fair amount of success as one would be hard-pressed to name any production in which he didn’t shine. While his forthcoming two forays into the magical realm (this and Marvel’s Doctor Strange) will be vastly different from each other, it’ll be fascinating to see what he brings to each performance.
What do you think of Cumberbatch as Jasper Maskelyne? Let us know in the comments below!