Robert Downey Jr. Involved In Two Sherlock Holmes Spinoff Shows For HBO Max

Robert Downey Jr. is collaborating with HBO Max for two streaming series set in the Sherlock Holmes universe. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Team Downey and Sherlock Holmes movie producer Lionel Wigram are slated as executive producers on the projects. There's no word on if Robert Downey Jr. will reprise his role as the titular detective, but both are also in the early stages of development. What's also not known is how interconnected the two Sherlock Holmes series will be. Of course, the actor is famously known for his role as Tony Stark/Iron Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The hero perished fighting Thanos in Avengers: Endgame.

The Sherlock Holmes big-screen movies starring Robert Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes and Jude Law as Dr. John Watson are based on the novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Sherlock Holmes has been a popular and successful franchise for Downey, even though there have only been two films to this point. The original film from 2009 made more than $524 million at the worldwide box office, and A Game of Shadows followed two years later, raking in nearly $544 million. A third Sherlock Holmes movie is currently in development, with both Downey and Law set to return and Dexter Fletcher stepping in to direct. Guy Ritchie directed the first two movies in the franchise.

Netflix recently added 2009's Sherlock Holmes and 2011's Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows to its catalog of content being added for the month of April. Fletcher gave an update on Sherlock Holmes 3 in October 2020, stating the film has been put on the back burner. The filmmaker behind Rocketman appeared on Celebrity Catch Upwhere he revealed he and the studio are waiting to see what happens in Hollywood post-coronavirus before they start work on the film in earnest.

"Sherlock's hit its own issues on and off. That's sort of sitting on the back burner at the moment until it becomes clear where the world is at and what's going to happen," Fletcher said at the time.

"At this point, we really feel that there is not a mystery-verse built out anywhere, and Conan Doyle is the definitive voice in that arena, I think, to this day," Downey said as a guest at Fast Company's Innovation Festival about the future of the franchise past Sherlock Holmes 3. "So to me, why do a third movie if you're not going to be able to spin off into some real gems of diversity and other times and elements?"

What do you think of the Sherlock Holmes franchise moving to live-action TV shows on HBO Max? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!