Sherlock Holmes to play Assange in WikiLeaks movie

In a poetic touch, Benedict Cumberbatch, a TV Sherlock, will play Julian Assange in "The Fifth Estate," a DreamWorks Movie about the good ship WikiLeaks and all who sailed in her.

Chris Matyszczyk
2 min read
Benedict Cumberbatch (left) as a young Assange with more hair. Frank Connor/DreamWorks

It can't be easy to create a movie in which the hero is seen by some as the villain.

Yet that is the difficult task for the production team behind "The Fifth Estate," a movie whose filming has already begun.

This DreamWorks opus traces the rises, falls, and drips of pathos surrounding Julian Assange and his WikiLeaks enterprise.

The Associated Press reveals that Assange will be played by Benedict Cumberbatch, one of the many who have impersonated Sherlock Holmes on film.

Cumberbatch is quite posh, so he should quite easily be able to express that touch of superiority that Assange often delivers.

The movie isn't an everyday expose of Assange's life confined to the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.

Instead, it focuses on the excitements around WikiLeaks' creation and the effect it had on contemporary society. It is told through the eyes of Daniel Domscheit-Berg, an early Assange colleague. He will be played by Daniel Bruhl, who was in "Inglourious Basterds."

Director Bill Condon is well-versed in the biting nature of a movie's subject matter, having previously directed "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn."

He insisted to the AP that this movie would simply "explore the complexities and challenges of transparency in the information age."

Assange seems to be a more fertile subject for filmmakers than even Steve Jobs. While two Jobs movies are currently in some stage of creation, there are apparently three Assange films in the making.

This one is due out in November -- which, sadly, may be sooner than Assange himself is.