Benedict Cumberbatch is one of the most prestigious British actors in Hollywood in recent yearsthanks to the leading roles that he has had as in the series Sherlockfilms like those of Doctor Strange and masterpieces like the power of the dogwhere he has demonstrated his versatility and his great mastery of diverse knowledge when it comes to embodying men who remain in the memory of moviegoers.
Even his colleagues know that the Englishman is capable of learning to play the violin or any other instrument in a matter of weeks in order to master all the abilities of his characters, giving him a “premium” category among the luminaries that Hollywood has, however, media international organizations have revealed that Cumberbatch could face an arduous legal process and all because of the bad practices of his ancestors, all related to slavery.
Everything would come from the new Republic of Barbados, a country that has just left behind the label of a British colony to have its own honorary president and thus replace the figure of the king as sovereign of the Caribbean island. This would have triggered a series of lawsuits to redeem the slave history that this territory has and that is where the actor would respond, all because one of his ancestors was part of the slave trade that took place there.
According to the newspaper The Telegraph, The one directly involved in this mess would be Joshua Cumberbatch, great-grandfather of the actor’s great-grandfather, who would have lived in Barbados during the 18th century. and specifically in 1728 he would have acquired the Cleland plantation, located in the north of the island, to grow sugar. Said work required the purchase of slaves to harvest the crops and work the land, which had been in the possession of the family for more than a century and in which time he had generated a great fortune for the family.
When slavery was abolished in 1834, all British families holding slaves received compensation for freeing their slaves. These English families, including Cumberbatch’s, received the sum of £6,000which at today’s conversion would be around one million euros, as reported by the British newspaper, an issue that today is seen as scandalous compensation that must be redeemed immediately.
For this reason, David Denny, Secretary General of the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration, told The Telegraph that “all descendants of white plantation owners who have benefited from the slave trade should be asked to pay reparations, including the Cumberbatch family,” adding that such money “It should be used to convert local clinics into hospitals, support schools, and improve the country’s infrastructure and housing”.
These statements reached the eyes of the ambassador of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) to Barbados, David Commissiong, who assured that the island is not asking absolutely anything from any descendant of any family and asserted that no specific legal process is being carried out against the actor or anyone in his family. “To date neither Caricom nor Barbados have officially filed a claim for reparations against a European family,” Commissiong told the Barbados Today newspaper.
At the moment Benedict has not ruled on the matter nor has it been reported that he has been notified of any legal process. What is clear is that the British actor himself has revealed his slave-owning past and in fact this was one of the reasons for participating in the film. 12 years a slavewhich received 9 Oscar nominations in 2014 and managed to win three awards: Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay for the work of John Ridley and Best Supporting Actress for the magnificent performance of Lupita Nyong’o.