Ian McKellen may have decades of film, television and theater experience, but since the early 2000s, the English actor has become best known for his roles as Magneto in the X-Men films and Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit franchise. This year, McKellen takes on another iconic character in director Bill Condon's Mr. Holmes.
The premise of McKellen as an elderly version of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's crime-solving hero was already enough to earn Mr. Holmes a spot on our most anticipated films of 2015. However, besides the vague description that the now-93-year-old Holmes would be embarking on his last case, we've had precious little information regarding what to expect from the film (which is based on the 2005 Mitch Cullin novel "A Slight Trick of the Mind").
Now McKellen himself has taken to Twitter to release the first official clip from Mr. Holmes. The above clip features Holmes (McKellen) taking a stroll with his housekeeper's son (Milo Parker) as he declares his wish to solve the last case he was working on before his retirement.
The dialogue-driven scene doesn't feature much in the way of thrills, but it does give a hint of McKellen's performance as well as the film's tone. Condon and McKellen previously collaborated on the 1998 biopic Gods and Monsters, in which the actor portrayed the last days of filmmaker James Whale's life. That memoir earned McKellen his first Oscar nomination, and Mr. Holmes looks like it may cover similar thematic ground - as both movies appear to center on a man trapped in the past.
Of course, McKellen is far from the only actor to bring the legendary detective to life in recent years. Robert Downey Jr. played Mr. Holmes in both of director Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes films (with a third installment currently stuck in development), and both Benedict Cumberbatch and Johnny Lee Miller have taken more modern cracks at the character on television in Sherlock and Elementary, respectively.
However, expect McKellen's more nostalgic take on Holmes looks to provide an entirely different kind of experience. Though it's far too soon to determine how the final film will turn out, Mr. Holmes could very well provide McKellen with the just the right material to deliver one of his strongest performances in years.
Are you excited to see McKellen take on the iconic role of Sherlock Holmes? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Mr. Holmes hits theaters sometime in 2015. Stay tuned to Screen Rant for more details.
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