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If there’s one thing Julian Assange does not lack, it’s confidence. But his epic self-assurance crumbles spectacularly in this clip from the Wikileaks thriller The Fifth Estate, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as the eccentric hacker-journalist.

In this scene from the movie, which opens Oct. 18, Cumberbatch’s Assange is sitting on a trove of classified documents sent to the cybergroup by US Army soldier Bradley Manning. The thousands of pages of military and diplomatic cables contain details of countless covert sources and ongoing operations, and also document deadly embarrassments, such as the 2007 slaying of two Reuters journalists by American Apache gunships.

Assange knows what he has is explosive, and is seeking to partner with some major media outlets to help parse the documents, seeking out the most important stories buried within. That’s what brings him to this meeting with investigative journalist Nick Davies of London’s The Guardian newspaper.

Davies (played by David Thewlis, best known as Professor Lupin from the Harry Potter films) is eager to see what Assange has, and although Cumberbatch’s character has been trying to hype the danger and menace these documents might bring with them — he’s actually fronting.

That is, until Davies breaks some very bad news for Assange: he’s right.

The Fifth Estate
  • Movie
  • 124 minutes