Being a sex symbol hasn't boosted Benedict's confidence

Benedict Cumberbatch admits that he’s actually very shy and lacks confidence.

The Sherlock star might have a huge fan base – a dedicated group known as Cumberbitches – but it’s not helped to boost his confidence in social situations.

‘I’m actually shy,’ says Benedict, 36.

‘I’m not that confident in social situations – just going up to someone in a bar and saying hi is even more difficult for me because they won’t know the real me.

‘They will just know me as a fictional person I play on the screen.’

And despite being heralded as a sex symbol Benedict is also insecure about his looks, admitting that he thinks he loses out on roles for not being attractive enough.

‘I’m aware of the power of looks,’ the actor tells TV Magazine.

‘I have wanted to play roles that have gone to much better-looking people than me and you think: “Oh well, that’s the pin-up guy’s part…” for an actor like my friend James McAvoy, who’s gorgeous on screen.

‘I’m not that. But at least I don’t have to worry about taking precious care of my face because it’s my commodity.

‘That’s a great freedom. I’m not afraid of being heinous for the sake of a part.’

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Anna Francis