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Benedict Cumberbatch irritated Jesse Plemons with method acting and ‘big boy’ comment

image of Benedict Cumerbatch on the red carpet
Benedict Cumberbatch went a little too far with his method acting. Pic credit: ©ImageCollect.com/StarMaxWorldwide

By the sounds of it, there was a little spat between the two male leads of Netflix’s The Power of the Dog. George Burbank actor Jesse Plemons revealed that, while method acting, Benedict Cumberbatch “got under his skin” by making an unexpected comment about his weight.

In the movie, the two played cowboy brothers Phil (Cumberbatch) and George Burbank. They have contrasting personalities with Phil being a standoffish, volatile man. George, however, falls in love with the movie’s leading lady Rose (Kirsten Dunst), and brings her and her son to their family ranch — much to Phil’s dismay.

This causes a major conflict with them as Rose and Phil butt heads. Cumberbatch recently expressed that he felt “deep empathy” for his character, knowing he was battling something unseen to the public eye.

The Western drama, directed by Jane Campion, is well acclaimed, bringing in good reviews from critics and audiences alike. It has been sweeping the awards season and recently won the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture in the Drama category, Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture (Kodi Smit-McPhee), and Best Director.

Plemons on Cumberbatch’s method acting

Method acting is a practice that gets mixed responses from actors and viewers. Practicing it involves adopting the traits and personalities of your characters into your everyday life until the two are indistinguishable. Some actors only adopt this practice while onset — refusing to break when the director calls “cut” while others isolate themselves from their true identities and refuse to break character while the project is filming.

Speaking with Variety, Plemons shared that Cumberbatch adopted method acting practices while on the set of The Power of the Dog. He said, “There was one time he got under my skin.”

“He was like, ‘Hey, big boy.’ It wasn’t ‘fatso.’ I feel like a few people in life have been like, ‘Hey, big boy,’ and I was like, ‘G*****n it. What the f**k?” shared Plemmons.

How did Cumberbatch respond?

Given that the Sherlock actor tends to avoid conflict, he responded just as one would suspect. Later in the shoot, Plemons confronted Cumberbatch, telling him that the comment “p****d him off”.

“He was like, ‘I’m so sorry’ and I was like, ‘No, don’t worry. It was great,'” added Plemons.

Following The Power of the Dog, Plemons can next be seen in the upcoming Martin Scorcese crime drama Killer of the Flower Moon. He is slated to star in the movie alongside Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro.

The Power of the Dog is currently streaming on Netflix.

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