WikiLeaks Posts Julian Assange's Disapproving Letter to Benedict Cumberbatch

12:30 PM PST 10/09/2013 by Erik Hayden

"I believe you are a good person, but I do not believe that this film is a good film," the anti-secrecy organization's founder wrote.

WikiLeaks has fired its latest salvo in the war against DreamWorks' Julian Assange biopic The Fifth Estate.

The anti-secrecy organization published a letter Wednesday from Assange that was purportedly sent to Benedict Cumberbatch, who portrays the WikiLeaks founder in the film.

Dated Jan. 15, 2013, the letter describes the film as a project that will "distort events and subtract from public understanding."

FILM REVIEW: The Fifth Estate

Assange wrote: "I believe you are a good person, but I do not believe that this film is a good film. I do not believe it is going to be positive for me or the people I care about. I believe that it is going to be overwhelmingly negative for me and the people I care about."

In a Hollywood Reporter cover story in September, Cumberbatch mentions that he had corresponded with Assange but didn't reveal details.

"He was pretty keen for me not to do the film, and the rest is sort of between us, really," the actor told THR at the time. 

In Assange's newly published letter, the WikiLeaks founder entreats Cumberbatch to exit the project. 

"I believe that you should reconsider your involvement in this enterprise," Assange wrote. "Consider the consequences of your cooperation with a project that vilifies and marginalises a living political refugee to the benefit of an entrenched, corrupt and dangerous state."

In a press release accompanying the letter, WikiLeaks states that "Cumberbatch’s reply to this email was courteous and considered. The actor communicated to Assange that aspects of the film’s script were troubling to him."

Assange has condemned the film at least since the project began production in January. WikiLeaks also has posted the script from the project and described it as "fiction masquerading as fact."

The Fifth Estate made its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival last month. 

It's set for a U.S. release Oct. 18 against the Sylvester Stallone-Arnold Schwarzenegger thriller Escape Plan and the horror remake Carrie

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