‘The Courier’ Benedict Cumberbatch’s Weight Loss – How Many Pounds Did the Actor Shed for the Movie?

'The Courier' Benedict Cumberbatch's Weight Loss - How Many Pounds Did the Actor Shed for the Movie?

The Courier star Benedict Cumberbatch is the subject of 21 pounds weight loss for his role as MI6 spy Greville Wynne in the movie. Have a look at his before and after pictures.

Benedict Cumberbatch shed 21 pounds for his new film The Courier (2021). The Doctor Strange star from MCU portrays real-life spy Greville Wynne, who spent months in a Soviet prison.

Cumberbatch described his weight loss as really terrible, adding that it left him unbelievably exposed. Let’s learn more details about Cumberbatch’s weight reduction journey for The Courier.

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Benedict Cumberbatch’s 21 Pounds Weight Loss for ‘The Courier’ Movie

Benedict Cumberbatch before and after 21 pounds weight loss for 'The Courier' (2021).

Benedict Cumberbatch before and after 21 pounds weight loss for ‘The Courier’ (2021).
Image Source: Weight & Skin

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Benedict Cumberbatch admitted that the 21-pound weight loss he underwent for his new film The Courier (2021) left him feeling extremely vulnerable, but he believes it helped him embody his role.

Cumberbatch plays real-life MI6 spy Greville Wynne, who was imprisoned in a Soviet prison for months after being apprehended by the KGB.

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Speaking with CinemaBlend, Cumberbatch talked about how training to get into shape for this part was a transforming experience for him.

The Sherlock star said,

I lost about a stone and a half [21 pounds], and it was through the usual methods of dieting, but also some extreme exercise. I was very fit.

While he underwent weight loss in a healthy manner, the Avengers: Endgame star admitted that he had to “shred” whatever he could, in an effort to get down to the ideal weight and “shrinkwrap [his] body mass around the muscle.” This resulted in a harrowing feeling.

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Cumberbatch said,

It’s horrible, but it’s basically a description for self-digestion, you also have to strip away muscle. And that’s a very nasty thing to be doing. And you get very disoriented, you feel dehydrated, you feel hungry all the time.

The actor added,

You feel emotionally and physically very vulnerable, all of which plays very helpfully into a character that must have endured this for months, if not years.

Cumberbatch follows a long list of stars who have slimmed down for film roles. Tom Holland, his Spider-Man: No Way Home co-star, recently discussed his own dramatic weight alterations for Apple TV’s film Cherry (2021).

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The Russo Brothers, who previously directed Benedict and Tom in Infinity War (2018) and Endgame (2019), revealed that Holland shed and regained 30 pounds for his character as a drug-addicted army vet struggling with PTSD in Cherry.

Joe Russo said,

Holland really shredded himself for the part. He lost 30 pounds, he gained it back. We’re on an independent movie schedule here. He didn’t really have a lot of time to be doing these things.

In a conversation with GQ, Holland described his rigorous dieting practice as “brutal,” and stated that he will not repeat such extreme weight loss and weight regain.

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Holland said,

It was awful… I got very sick, actually. And it’s changed my relationship with food completely. I think I would find it very difficult to find a role that would warrant that sort of abuse on my body again.

The Courier released in the United States on 19th March 2021.

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What’s ‘The Courier’ Movie Starring Benedict Cumberbatch About?

The Courier briefs the real-life story of a British entrepreneur who assisted MI6 in breaking into the Soviet nuke program amid the Cold War.

Greyville Wynne (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his Soviet source, Oleg Penkovsky (codenamed Ironbark), delivered critical intelligence that helped bring the Cuban Missile Crisis to a close.

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In order to gather intelligence on Soviet weapons being shipped to Cuba, MI6 and CIA agents ask Wynne to masquerade as Oleg Penkovsky’s business associate. Ultimately, both Wynne and Penkovsky are captured.

Penkovsky confesses to forsaking his nation, while Wynne insists he has no knowledge of the intelligence handed on, which validates Wynne’s claim of no involvement.

Wynne ensures Penkovsky that his sacrifice is worthwhile. Penkovsky is executed and laid to rest in an unmarked grave. Wynne is finally released as part of a prisoner swap for Russian spy Konon Molody.

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The Washington Post‘s Ann Hornaday rated the film 3 out of 4 stars, stating:

The Courier makes a smart, stylish stand for the kind of old-fashioned period spy thriller that is increasingly being turned into bingeable series for streaming services. Its modesty and carefully managed ambitions define its strong suit at a time when such films are scarcer every day.

According to Variety‘s Peter Debruge, this is a great espionage thriller that isn’t dull by any means. He added, The Courier‘s hook is that this is based on genuine events, and the history behind it ought to be conveyed.

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Besides Benedict Cumberbatch as Greyville Wynne, the notable cast includes Merab Ninidze as Colonel Oleg Penkovsky, Rachel Brosnahan as Emily Donovan (CIA officer), Jessie Buckley as Sheila Wynne (Greville’s wife), Angus Wright as Dickie Franks (MI6 officer), and Kirill Pirogov as Gribanov (KGB officer).

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