Benedict Cumberbatch talks doing Motion-Capture for ‘The Hobbit’: “It’s very freeing, once you put the suit on and the sensors”

Benedict Cumberbatch will soon be known for playing two famous literary characters—Sherlock Holmes in the BBC television series, Sherlock, and Smaug the dragon in the new film, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.

Cumberbatch does admit that not much of his work will be seen in the first installment of The Hobbit series.  “I think my eye will open at the end of the first film, and then you’ll get the rest of me in the second,” he told Total Film.

Although much of his work was done through motion capture, Cumberbatch enjoyed the experience of bringing the dragon to life.  “It’s very freeing, once you put the suit on and the sensors,” he said.  “I’ve never felt less encumbered, actually.  And you have to be.  You have to be free.”

Performing a role mostly for CGI is a very different acting process.  “You just have to lose your shit on a carpeted floor in a place that looks a little bit like a mundane government building,” the British actor said.  “It was just me as well, with four static cameras and all the sensors.  Then the boys at Weta work their magic.”

The first Hobbit film is set to open December 14, 2014.

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