Of all the many variations of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, there are precious few that venture into comedic territory. Sure, Guy Ritchie’s gritty reboot is riddled with snarky one-liners, imbued with Robert Downey Jr.’s at-times-effortless charisma, but one adaptation that will take the titular sleuth in a relatively new direction is Holmes & Watson.
Headed up by long-time comedy partners Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly (Step Brothers, Talladega Nights), Deadline is reporting that the feature film has now filled out its supporting cast with Rob Brydon (Inspector Lestrade), Kelly Macdonald (Mrs. Hudson) and Rebecca Hall (Dr. Grace Hart). Earlier in the week, Lauren Lapkus climbed aboard to play Millie, a sharp-as-nails thesp with a connection to Holmes himself.
With no mention of a production start, there’s little-to-no story details available for Holmes & Watson, only that it will adopt a slightly more light-hearted tone than previous incarnations. That’s something you can garner from the casting alone, with Ferrell and Reilly in line to portray Holmes and John Watson, respectively.
Sacha Baron Cohen was once attached to play the latter before Reilly came aboard, but either way, Ferrell and Reilly have chemistry in spades. How their dynamic duo will stack up to previous takes on the characters – think Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law; Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu; Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman – remains to be seen, but the mere fact that this adaptation will skew towards comedy has us feeling cautiously optimistic.
Holmes & Watson is expected to begin filming soon ahead of a release in 2018.