Benedict Cumberbatch to play codebreaker Alan Turing?

'Sherlock' actor could take on lead role in tragic WW2 hero biopic

Benedict Cumberbatch could play codebreaker Alan Turing in a forthcoming film, according to reports.

It was previously thought that Leonardo Di Caprio was the frontrunner to play the mathematics genius who was credited with playing a significant part in Britain’s victory in the second world war, after Warner Bros bought the script for The Imitation Game by first-time writer Graham Moore.

According to Deadline, however, Cumberbatch is now in talks about taking on the role. Turing was largely written out of 2001’s Enigma, the last major portrayal of the Bletchley Park decryption centre, even though he was the leading figure among the codebreakers. Michael Apted‘s film drew criticism for centreing instead on a heterosexual character named Jericho, played by Dougray Scott, who in all other ways resembled Turing.

Cumberbatch is already working on another high-profile biopic, The Fifth Estate, in which he will portray WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. The Fifth Estate is scheduled to open in the US on November 15, but the UK release date has yet to be confirmed.

In the meantime, Cumberbatch will be seen in sci-fi sequel Star Trek Into Darkness, in which he plays a mysterious villain called John Harrison. The film opens on May 17 – scroll down and click ‘play’ to watch the trailer.