Born in London in 1976, Benedict seemed destined to end up an actor as he was born to two actors.
He grew up at boarding school and became a member of the The Rattigan Society, Harrow School's principal club for the dramatic arts. He later studied drama in Manchester and gained his MA at London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts.
In 2001 Benedict took on first West End role, as George Tesman in Sir Richard Eyre
's revival of Hedda Gabler
, and he garnered his first Olivier nomination for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.
He has had leading roles
in Royal National Theatre productions of After the Dance
(2010) and Danny Boyle's Frankenstein
(2011) both of which were received to critical acclaim, and he won his first Olivier Award for Frankenstein.
Benedict gained two BAFTA TV nominations, one for his work in as Stephen Hawking in BBC drama Hawking
, and the TV adaptation of Small Island
before finding international fame for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes in the BBC drama Sherlock.
The contemporary take on Arthur Conan Doyle's classic novels also features Martin Freeman and has led to two BAFTA nominations, two Emmy nominations and a Golden Globe for Benedict.
Benedict has also taken on numerous film roles but in 2013 he starred in some of the year's biggest hits including Star Trek Into Darkness and the Oscar winner 12 Years A Slave.
As well as the stage and the screen. Benedict has also shown an affinity for radio work and narration for both documentaries and audiobooks. For the 70th anniversary of Normandy landings during World War II, Cumberbatch read the original radio bulletins from June 1944 for BBC Radio 4.
The 38-year-old thespian is also a philanthropist. He is an ambassador for The Prince's Trust
and a supporter of many arts charities, and in 2014 publicly backed the Hacked Off campaign.