Benedict Wong on starring in Netflix's '3 Body Problem' series: It piqued my interest

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Benedict Wong on starring in Netflix's '3 Body Problem' series: It piqued my interest

Friday, 29 March 2024 | PTI | New Delhi

Benedict Wong on starring in Netflix's '3 Body Problem' series: It piqued my interest

British star Benedict Wong, who features in the Netflix series "3 Body Problem", says he was drawn to the show's world because of the popularity of its source material, Chinese author Liu Cixin's novels.

Wong, best known for playing a superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) as well as movies such as "The Martian" and "Sunshine", said he was intrigued by Cixin's books, whose fan base includes former US president Barack Obama and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

"This trilogy of books are incredibly popular in China, and George R R Martin, Barack Obama and Mark Zuckerberg are its fans. So, it piqued my interest and I devoured the first two books.

"The first one was so science heavy. It was a massive challenge of how this is going to be filmed and I love a challenge. So I picked up the gauntlet and took on the quest with all of them (cast and crew)," Wong told PTI in an interview.

"3 Body Problem", an eight-episode series, currently streaming on Netflix, is developed by "Game of Thrones" duo of David Benioff and DB Weiss in collaboration with Alexander Woo.

Wong said he was contacted by the showrunners when he was working on the 2022 movie "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness".

"I didn't know of the story. I just kind of got contacted that Dan and Dave and Alex wanted to see me whilst I was filming Dr. Strange. And I was just very intrigued that there were three showrunners needing to take on this massive project," he added.

"3 Body Problem" begins with a young scientist's decision to contact an alien civilisation during 1960s China, a moment that echoes across space and time. And many years later, a group of scientists come together to tackle humanity's greatest threat.

In the series, Wong essays the role of Da Shi, the London-based detective investigating the mysterious deaths of top scientists all over the world.

One of the highlights of the show is the camaraderie between Wong and co-star Liam Cunningham's characters. Cunningham plays the role of Da Shi's boss Thomas Wade, who is also the enigmatic leader of an elite intelligence agency in charge of the planetary defence.

In a series that explores darker themes such as existential threats and moral and ethical dilemmas, the two often bring a much needed respite with some of the light-hearted moments in the story.

Wong said he has been a "massive fan" of Cunningham, who has also featured in films such as "Clash of the Titans" and "War Horse".

"I've been a massive fan of this guy. He was my tennis partner, dance partner and ice skating partner. It's a real pleasure once that sort of environment is there. It allows even more to play. I think that's what we did with our scenes," he added.

"3 Body Problem" also features Eiza Gonzalez, Jonathan Pryce, Tsai Chin, John Bradley, Jess Hong, Jovan Adepo and Sea Shimooka.

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