Brainy men and women, rejoice!

Benedict Cumberbatch, the cinema’s smartest “It Guy,” actually achieved fame by playing quirky, intelligent, complex characters such as spies, scientists, rogue journalists, and the smarmy voice of a very smart dragon. 

But it was the role of literature’s most brilliant detective, Sherlock Holmes, updated for the 21st century, which whisked Cumberbatch up into the higher elevations of stardom. Test your own wits to see how well you know this multi-syllabled actor. And when you are finished, be sure to give us the names of three schools to which you would like your scores sent.

1.Cumberbatch met his fiancée, Sophie Hunter, on the set of which movie?

A) “Star Trek: Into the Darkness”

B) “12 Years A Slave”

C) “Burlesque Fairytales”

D) “The Fifth Estate”

2. Benedict attended which legendary English boarding school?

A) Eton

B) Rugby

C) Harrow

D) Dulwich College

3. What movie gave the creators of “Sherlock” the idea to cast Cumberbatch as the famous detective?

A) “Atonement”

B) “The Other Boleyn Girl”

C) “Amazing Grace”

D) “Hawking”

4. Benedict and Una Stubbs, who plays Mrs. Hudson on “Sherlock,” have a special relationship based upon the fact that she:

A) Was his teacher at drama school

B) Is a long-time friend of his mother’s

C) Is the mother of his first girlfriend

D) Once told him he would never make it as an actor

5. Benedict’s paternal grandfather did what unusual job?

A) Submarine commander

B) Member of British Parliament

C) Queen’s Elizabeth’s chauffeur

D) Olympic javelin champion

6. Cumberbatch’s two middle names pay tribute to:

A) Winston Churchill

B) Laurence Olivier

C) Charles Dickens

D) His father

7. During his “gap year” between high school and university, Cumberbatch:

A) Taught English in a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in India

B) Spent a year studying the polar ice cap in Antarctica

C) Hitchhiked across China

D) Trained as a llama shearer in the Andes

8. Which British actor is Cumberbatch famous for mimicking?

A) Sean Connery

B) Michael Caine

C) Jeremy Irons

D) Alan Rickman

9. What did Cumberbatch do to prepare for his role as Sherlock Holmes?

A) Lived for a month at Holmes’s Baker Street address

B) Read every story written by Arthur Conan Doyle

C) Trained with a psychic to become better at reading minds

D) Shadowed a team of Scotland Yard’s undercover detectives

10. The actor originally slated to play the part of code-breaker Alan Turing in “The Imitation Game” was:

A) Matt Damon

B) Daniel Radcliffe

C) Leonardo DiCaprio

D) Christian Bale


1. C: “Burlesque Fairytales”

2. C: Harrow

3. A: “Atonement”

4. B: A long-time friend of his mother’s

5. A: Submarine commander

6. D: His father

7. A: Taught English in a Tibetan monastery

8. D: Alan Rickman

9. B: Read all of the works by Arthur Conan Doyle

10. C: Leonardo DiCaprio

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