Offending Word Was Uttered During Interview With Tavis Smiley
On Monday, the wildly popular star of Sherlock – Benedict Cumberbatch apologized for using the word “colored” during an interview with Tavis Smiley, the liberal political commentator whose talk show on PBS is widely admired. Cumberbatch has been nominated for Oscar for the film The Imitation Game. The use of the word came in the context of this year’s acting Oscar nominations going to only white actors. He was talking about diversity in the entertainment industry and he had uttered the word so fast that it was barely audible. He has said that “colored actors” had more opportunity in America than in Britain and there was a need to change this.
Cumberbatch Calls Himself An “Idiot”
A despondent and apologetic Cumberbatch took out a statement and called himself an “idiot.” He also said the use of the word was a “thoughtless use of inappropriate language.” “I’m devastated to have caused offense by using this outmoded terminology,” “I offer my sincere apologies. I make no excuse for my being an idiot and know the damage is done.” Show Racism the Red Card, which is a British anti-racism charity welcomed the move to apologize, but said that the team used was “outdated.”
Cumberbatch Indiscretion Pardoned By Industry
The most surprising fact is that the industry knows Cumberbatch to be a man who is careful with his words. Therefore, it was really surprising that he had used offending language such as this. Smiley defended him and said that Cumberbatch was a good man and his momentary lapse of sanity should be forgiven and forgotten. The incident is even more embarrassing because Cumberbatch’s ancestors were slave owners in Barbados. Nevertheless he had support from different quarters and his Oscar chances are unlikely to diminish.