Want to Go to Jerusalem with Benedict Cumberbatch?

When The Hobbit opened a few months ago, we all saw a dragon’s eye view of the fictional place called Lake Town. But we didn’t hear the dragon’s voice. Not yet.

Two years ago, my filmmaking friend Nathan Clarke, director of the surprising and hard-hitting documentary Wrestling for Jesus, pointed me to some aerial footage of another location — the very real city of Jerusalem.

It was, in fact, an unprecedented 7-minute aerial view of the city, captured for a documentary that will give moviegoers a chance to tour Jerusalem.

But no, we lacked a proper narrator for this sky-view tour as well. …

Now, at long last, Jerusalem is being readied for the screen. This 45-minute tour of the great city is a co-production of Cosmic Picture and Arcane Pictures, and it reportedly giving us “exclusive access” to “iconic holy sites and little-known parts of the region.”

Having risen to great heights, Cumberbatch will now narrate from the sky.

Today, we learned about another collaborator on this project: Benedict Cumberbatch.

So, the actor known for playing Sherlock Holmes and the villain in Star Trek Into Darkness, the man who will give voice to Smaug the Dragon when we return to Middle Earth and Lake Town later this year… he’ll also be the voice of our Jerusalem tour.

And they promise that the movie will explore “some of the surprising intersections among Judaism, Christianity and Islam, which come together in this sacred city.”

Cumberbatch seems to be unique among rising stars in that he’s as popular for his voice as for his face and onscreen charm. I’d be hard-pressed to think of an actor under 40 whose voice is so immediately recognizable, and who uses it to such memorable effect.

If you were going to tour the great cities of the world with a recorded tour guide, what voice would you want in your headphones?

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About Jeffrey Overstreet

Jeffrey Overstreet has two passions: writing fiction, and celebrating art — music, cinema, photography, literature — through writing and teaching. He is the author of a “memoir of dangerous moviegoing” — Through a Screen Darkly. And his four-novel fantasy series, The Auralia Thread, which begins with Auralia's Colors, was published by Random House. He speaks at universities and conferences around the world about understanding art through eyes of faith. He is earning his MFA in Creative Writing at Seattle Pacific University, where he has worked for 11 years as an editor, writer, and communications project manager. His work has been recognized in The New Yorker, TIME, The Seattle Times, IMAGE, Ravi Zacharias International — and Christianity Today, where he served as a film journalist for more than a decade. He recently began a weekly column called "Listening Closer" for Christ and Pop Culture.

  • pastordt

    WAY cool.

  • http://twitter.com/bejt10 be

    well I hope Benedict will drop by Jerusalem for a visit…

  • alford

    There’s noone better than Cumberbatch. Stunning voice.

  • Ancalagon

    Jeremy Irons
    James Earl Jones
    Samuel L Jackson
    Christopher Lee
    Cate Blanchett
    Charles Dance
    Natalie Portman (speaks Hebrew)
    and yes, Benedict Cumberbatch

  • Daniel Becker

    John Hurt would be my choice, but Cumberbatch’s voice is perfectly fine.