Benedict Cumberbatch worries he might have been the coronavirus "patient zero".
The "Imitation Game" star was very sick towards the end of 2019 after flying into South Africa and he now worries he helped to spread coronavirus around the world before the first cases had even been confirmed.
Speaking to the independent.co.uk, he explained: "I was incredibly ill, to the point that when all this Covid stuff suddenly broke in the new year, I was thinking, oh my god was I actually patient zero. I was so ill – it was borderline pneumonia."
It was previously revealed Benedict donated NZ$23,600 to buy hospital scrubs.
The actor made the donation while he was in New Zealand. He got in touch with Savile Row tailor Emma Willis after she launched her Style For Surgeons initiative in April.
Emma - who previously fitted Benedict, 44, for shirts onscreen and for his wedding to Sophie Hunter in 2015 - said: "It was so great. I got a call from him out of the blue saying: 'It's Benedict, I'm in New Zealand'. He said: 'I've heard about your Style For Surgeons and I would love to get involved. What can I do?' I said, 'We're aiming to raise £30,000 and we've got £12,000 more to raise to cover the cost of the fabric, we're covering the cost of the making of them.' He said: 'Count it done,' and transferred the rest of the money," she recalled.
"He obviously felt a real need to support. We do ongoing work with him and there's also something in the pipeline. I think people, like Benedict, who use their influence and fame to support important causes are wonderful. They see how they can help people through their fame in such a positive way."
The actor has previously said he was "blessed" to have spent lockdown in New Zealand with his family, including his elderly parents.
He spent alert level 4 lockdown in New Zealand last year after accidentally getting caught in border closures while working on a movie in the country.
Cumberbatch was in New Zealand filming "The Power of the Dog" with Kiwi film-maker Jane Campion when the country went into lockdown in March last year.
He said he was fortunate to be "stuck" in New Zealand with his family.
"We were so blessed to be there ... Very, very fortunate," he told Newshub.
The actor revealed he spent lockdown in the country with his wife, his three sons and his parents, who are in their 80s.
"It was too late by then to risk going back home. I had both my parents with me who are in their 80s, and my dad is severely asthmatic ... and my three boys and my wife, a very merry band of us. We couldn't have landed in a more fortunate situation, we were so lucky and I just held them close to me," the "Doctor Strange" actor added.
"We couldn't have landed in a more fortunate situation," he said.
The actor, who is now back in London, could not say enough good things about the hospitality of Kiwis.
"One of the greatest of your national characteristics - if I may be so bold as to analyse it - is your welcomeness, your hospitality, your open-arm care of all comers. We felt so, so privileged to be in your company, we really did, so thank you, from the bottom of my heart," he said during a video interview.
- with Bang! Showbiz