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Benedict Cumberbatch: Being a dad helps my acting

Benedict Cumberbatch: Being a dad helps my acting

Benedict Cumberbatch thinks being a father has helped his career.

The 'Doctor Strange' actor - who already has 16-month-old son Christopher with his wife Sophie Hunter, who is expecting their second child - admits his little boy is a huge source of "inspiration" to him and thinks the youngster gives him "strength".

He said: "Lots of people, especially women, get told, 'Oh parenthood is really going to affect your career - and it does, but for the better I think.

"I know I'm in a very privileged position in my career but I think everyone, even if they're in a challenging time in their life, draws strength from their children. They are your inspiration. It adds to your work, it never takes away."

And the 40-year-old actor admitted being a dad has affected his relationship with his own parents, Timothy Carlton and Wanda Ventham.

He said: "How you think about your parents suddenly accelerates. It's about understanding what they did for you, how they did it and, in my case, being incredibly grateful and really moved."

The 'Sherlock' star has always looked up to his actor parents to set the standard of how to balance his work and family life.

He said: "I started out in this profession with two parents to live up to who had successful careers, the respect of their peers, and a good time doing a job that can be tough on family life. I thought, if I do half as good a job as them, then I'm fine.

"Their standards are the standards I wanted to meet. My parents are incredibly supportive now. Not that they weren't in the beginning - they just wanted something different and better for me, something a bit more grown up ... for me to be a barrister or doctor or something else."

Though Benedict contemplated a legal career, he soon realised it would come with as many pitfalls as his first passion.

He told HELLO! magazine: "Law bit deepest for a while but as I went down that route, I discovered it was just as precarious - you're only as good as your last case, it's oversubscribed as a profession and there are so many brilliant people not getting jobs. So why not pursue my first dream and roll with the punches."