After spending the better part of a decade developing The Mauritanian, an adaptation of Mohamedou Ould Slahi’s memoirs detailing his 14 years of being tortured at Guantanamo Bay despite never being charged, Benedict Cumberbatch has become a fierce advocate for shutting down the prison camp that became a controversial holding facility for alleged terrorists in the aftermath of 9/11. Far too often, it’s been reported that detainees are actually innocent and were never given a chance to defend themselves outside of a military proceeding that is often stacked against them, and Cumberbatch is now planning to take his concerns straight to the top.
During a lengthy interview, the British actor was asked if he’s hoping newly-elected President Joe Biden will actually deliver where Barack Obama did not by finally shutting down Gitmo for good. And from the sound of things, Cumberbatch plans to take a direct approach.
Via The Independent:
“Hoping? I’m going to plead with the guy,” retorts Cumberbatch. “It is a huge spend. It’s the most expensive prison on earth. And what are the results? Where are the prosecutions? That’s just being really brutally economic about it, it just doesn’t work. And then you have the human rights issue. It’s an atrocious own goal, I think for the free world to be incarcerating people through extraordinary rendition, torturing them and extracting confessions they think are then usable in prosecution.
Before elaborating on how he became obsessed with adapting Slahi’s experience for The Mauritanian, Cumberbatch added a final thought to make it clear where he stands on Guantanamo. “It is a really dangerous, unnecessary, and ineffectual place, I think, and enough people have suffered there.” With the actor poised to take on a larger role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Cumberbatch will soon have a sizable platform that he can use to get Biden’s attention and press him on closing down Gitmo once and for all. Looks like he’s already on his way.
(Via The Independent)