Now that Marvel have finally locked down Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch to play Dr. Stephen Strange in their upcoming film adaptation of Doctor Strange from director Scott Derrickson, we can turn our attention to more pressing casting matters. Who will head up Inhumans? Who will be the villain in Guardians of the Galaxy 2?
How many more times can Marvel hire Sherlock Holmes?
No, seriously. How many? Robert Downey, Jr. played Sherlock Holmes in Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes and, adding another Sherlock to the mix, it made us wonder: Are there any other great actors known for playing Sherlock Holmes that the House of Ideas could poach for future superhero movies?
Here are some candidates...!
Jonny Lee Miller
Kind of the obvious one, since he's currently appearing in what many people have called the U.S. version of Sherlock, CBS' Elementary. He's fairly young, fairly attractive, acerbic and in many ways would be a great complement to somebody like Chris Pratt.
This actor, who has appeared in the Harry Potter franchise as well as in V for Vendetta, is only 54 years old -- plenty young enough to keep pace with Robert Downey, Jr. and Samuel L. Jackson if the right role for him were to come along.
Sir Ian McKellen
Okay, so he's hugely recognizable as a Marvel-owned character...but that doesn't count, since Fox is different from Marvel Studios and it would spoil our fun.
He's just finished production on Mr. Holmes, from Gods and Monsters and Twilight: Breaking Dawn director Bill Condon, in which McKellen plays an aged, retired Sherlock Holmes looking back on his life, and grapples with an unsolved case involving a beautiful woman.
He has one of the great voices in American cinema. Whether you know him as Nixon, as Deep Space Nine's Minister Jaro or as Superman Returns's Perry White, Langella is a reliably great actor with a terrific ability to project menace.
The actor has so much in production and pre-production right now, it's difficult to picture him opening up too much time for Marvel...but you never know! After all, it's not like Cumberbatch has a lot of time to sit at home washing his tights, either.
How many people have played both Sherlock Holmes and James Bond in major motion pictures? Roger Moore, that's how many.
This former Doctor played Holmes in the 1982 TV miniseries adapting The Hound of the Baskervilles, and he's still young and vibrant enough to play a role more vital than just the sneering villains and corrupt politicians that many of the veteran actors on this list would likely be relegated to simply because of the physicality of most other Marvel movie roles.
While he never technically played Sherlock Holmes, his turn in the cult movie Zero Effect was based on the Great Detective (the story was, in fact, a modernization of A Scandal in Bohemia).
His "Holmes," Darryl Zero, was in fact really, really damanged. The drug problems and antisocial behavior seen in the source material almost overcame his detection skill, making him a genuine chore to work with. That kind of broken person would fit in really well with the Marvel Universe.
Like in Zero Effect or Igby Goes Down, we'd love to see Pullman take on a role that lets him be basically bats--t crazy. Like, Benicio del Toro as The Collector levels of camp and immersion.