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Benedict Cumberbatch Has Begged Fans To Stop Filming Him During "Hamlet"

He gave an impromptu speech to fans outside the stage door, saying people filming in the audience was a "mortifying" experience for him.

Benedict Cumberbatch is currently starring as Hamlet in a production of the play at the Barbican Theatre in London.

Johannes Eisele / Getty Images

During Saturday night's performance, the play had to be stopped and resumed twice because of technical difficulties. This was made all the more problematic when it became apparent that people were filming the performance.

After coming off stage, Benedict gave a speech at the stage door in which he begged fans not to film during the performance.

He asked them to film his speech and then "tweet, blog, hashtag the shit out of it" to get the message spread far and wide, as he doesn't use any form of social media.

He said that resuming the play only to see red lights in the theatre filming him was "mortifying". / Via

"I can see red lights in the auditorium," he said. "It may not be any of you here that did that, but it's blindingly obvious. We had to restart again tonight at 'To be or not to be', which is not the easiest place to pick up a play full stop, but this made it harder. It's very, very obvious. It's mortifying, and there's nothing less enjoyable as an actor on stage, experiencing that."

Benedict went on to say that as of this week, there will be new devices to "detect and evict" people who are filming – something he doesn't want to happen.

He said: "It's going to get more strict. They've got devices that are coming in on Monday that will detect and have people evicted. I don't want that to happen – that's a horrible way to police what's a wonderful thing."

He then explained that he wants to give theatregoers a live performance that they'll remember in their "minds and not on their phones."

"I can't give you what I want to give you," he said, "which is a live performance that you'll remember, hopefully in your minds and brains whether it's good, bad or indifferent, rather than on your phones. So it's not me blaming you, this is me asking you to ripple it out there, in the beautiful way that you do with your funny electronic things."

Bravo, Benedict. 👏

Watch the full speech here.

View this video on YouTube

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