It doesn’t seem like that long ago that “Star Trek Into Darkness” was one of J.J. Abrams’ trademark mysteries wrapped up in an enigma. Of course we know all about the secrets of the sci-fi sequel and who certain distinguished British actors were playing and how they might relate to previous sequels in the series.
Ok, so now we can actually say it. Benedict Cumberbatch was Khan. We can finally talk about that openly without any worry of Bad Robots descending upon us for being big fat spoilers.
To celebrate the new freedom and the release of “Star Trek Into Darkness” for digital download, we’re excited to bring you an exclusive behind-the-scenes featurette about Khan and how Cumberbatch won the role of a Sikh character originally played by a Latino man.
“Originally, what we thought of was ‘Who are the actors that we thought would feel as we did with the first film, in the spirit of what had come before?’ Damon [Lindelof] mentioned Benedict Cumberbatch, and I watched him and he was so not the Khan I knew at all,” Abrams explains in the featurette.
“On that level, I thought, ‘We are definitely going to get in trouble.’ Fans would say, ‘Oh, he looks nothing like him. It makes no sense.’ The truth is, if I think something is good, that supersedes everything. This felt like the righteous way to go because he was so damn good.”
Even if he was “so damn good,” Cumberbatch was kept in the dark as much as we were before agreeing to appear in the sequel. He recalls the initial “I got a call saying ‘They are considering you to play the baddie in the next “Star Trek” film.’ I went, ‘As in the J.J. Abrams franchise?’ They went, ‘Yeah.’ I went, ‘Oh, nice. Can I see a script?’ ‘No.’ ‘Can I see some—’ ‘No.’ ‘Well, who am I playing?’ ‘We can’t tell you.’ ”
“Star Trek Into Darkness” is now available for digital download and hits Blu-ray and DVD on September 10.