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  • Writer's pictureBroadway Beat

Fans Boycott National Theatre, Demand "Frankenstein" with More Benedict Cumberbatch Trying to Stand

by Cameron Smith. @CamRayNYC.

LONDON - The National Theatre’s recent re-release of their 2011 recording of Frankenstein has received acclaim from theatre fans across the globe. However, in spite of all its wonder, the production has sparked outrage, causing some fans to boycott the National Theatre. The reason for the boycott? Audiences simply want more of Benedict Cumberbatch (“Creature”) trying to stand, as he does for several minutes at the start of the play, sources confirmed.

The scene alone reflects the epitome of theatre. One could imagine the challenge Benedict faces when presented with such a scene. Would Creature stand as a baby would? Or maybe the monster stands like a man would who hasn’t walked in a while?” questioned avid Cumberbatch fan, Traci Mitchell. “From his goat-like groans to his contorted yet oddly fit body, Cumby’s performance is similar to that of a giraffe having a heart attack and stroke at the same time. It’s a shame we couldn’t have more. We demand more.”

Director Danny Boyle’s production opens with the birth of Creature - Victor Frankenstein’s deformed creation. Emerging from a skin woven womb, the monster learns to take his first steps. For 6 literal minutes of deafening silence, the audience watches the newly born Creature (i.e. Cumberbatch) attempt to stand. It’s a gripping opening, and fans want more.

“I mean… the lighting design is okay and I think Jonny Lee Miller was in the play. But why couldn’t the show devote more time to Cumberbatch standing?” asked Jamie Blake, Administrator for a Benedict Cumberbatch Facebook fan page. “I could watch Cumberbatch stand for hours. Squirming, standing, falling, standing, wiggling around, falling again. In my 27 years of living on this planet, I’ve never witnessed anything like it.”

Fans also believe Cumberbatch solidified his mark in theatrical history with the production.

“This is the ultimate accomplishment for an actor, “says theatre historian Gregory Terren. “Laying flat on his stomach, Cumberbatch pushes himself up and stands. A phoenix from the ashes of a fiery womb. We may never see such a performance again, so please let us see more. Just five hours of him standing. It’s what the stage needs.”

At press time, The Broadway Beat caught up with Mr. Cumberbatch for his take on the controversy, to which he responded, “Wait. Who are you? How did you get this number?” and then hung up. The National Theatre has not released any statement regarding the boycott, but sources confirm that they’re desperately searching the archives for more footage of Benedict standing, or at the very least, a few clips from Johnny Lee Miller’s nights in the role.


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