Belfast Telegraph

Cumberbatch Wikileaks film unveiled

Benedict Cumberbatch's performance as Julian Assange has been unveiled in the first trailer for Wikileaks film The Fifth Estate.

The film is a fictionalised account of the Wikileaks saga, starring the Sherlock actor as Assange, the website's founder who leaked confidential information on the US military's operations in Afghanistan and Iraq to newspapers including the Guardian, the New York Times and Der Spiegel.

Cumberbatch makes an extreme transformation for the film, with his face aged with make-up, his hair long and white, and he adopts an Australian accent in his bid to become Assange.

The trailer shows events leading up to Wikileaks major revelations which shook the world.

Cumberbatch appears giving a speech in which Assange declares himself as "one whistle-blower willing to expose secrets and topple the most powerful and most repressive of regimes."

Laura Linney appears as a US government official warning of the dangers the site may pose. Goodbye Lenin's Daniel Bruhl stars as Assange's colleague Daniel Domscheit-Berg.

The film also stars Stanley Tucci, David Thewlis, Peter Capaldi as Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger, Downton Abbey's Dan Stevens and Anna Karenina's Alicia Vikander.

The film is partly based on Guardian writers David Leigh and Luke Harding's book WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange's War on Secrecy.

It has been described by Assange as a "massive propaganda attack".

The Fifth Estate is to be released in UK cinemas on January 1, 2014.

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