Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes opened over the Christmas holidays against the biggest movie of all time in James Cameron’s Avatar, yet it still won over many fans and banked over half a billion dollars worldwide. Throwing those numbers into the Hollywood math machine and the equations lead to the obvious: a sequel is coming.
Warner Bros. was confident enough in the Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law starrer that they commissioned a script Kieran and Michele Mulroney for a sequel, months before Sherlock Holmes was even released. The studio wants to fast-track the sequel into production which became obvious when Robert Downey Jr. had to drop out of Cowboys & Aliens in order to shoot the Holmes sequel this summer.
The question on a lot of people’s minds now is whether or not those rumors and reports of Brad Pitt playing Moriarty are true.
Sherlock Holmes acted in large part as a set-up film for the character’s arch-rival with the introduction of Moriarty as the master behind the curtain and obvious feature villain of Sherlock Holmes 2.
While Moriarty did play a part in the first movie, it was never officially announced as to who played his voice. Rumors leading up to the film’s debut was that it was going to be Brad Pitt. After some false tabloid reports explained Ritchie would reshoot Sherlock with Pitt as the villain, it was reported late last summer from a legit source that the studio was in talks with Pitt to play the villain in Sherlock Holmes 2.
Nothing has been confirmed on this front but Collider had a chance to speak with the writers, Kieran Mulroney and Michele Mulroney about Sherlock Holmes 2 where they touched on which classic Holmes stories they like and hinted that Pitt might be be Moriarty.
What stories do the writers like from Arthur Conan Doyle original work (56 short stories on Sherlock Holmes in total)? Both immediately said ‘The Adventure of the Speckled Band’ then joked about ‘The Adventure of the Red-Headed League.’
Kieran: “‘The Adventure of the Red-Headed League.’ That’s sort of deep in the canon. I love it because it actually has to do with … it’s a theft crime where they’re hiring ginger-haired men. They’re luring people in by sending out notices that say “If you have red hair,” which of course in England is looked down upon still to this day, “then join our club.” And then, that club becomes a front for a criminal enterprise.”
Michel: “It’s very silly.”
Kieran: “Yeah. It’s such a bizarre and old fashioned thing. We’re not making a version of The Red-Headed League, by the way.”
This was followed by laughter from the pair then confirmation that this definitely won’t be in the movie in any way. Moving on to the Brad Pitt side of things, what do the writers thing about Brad Pitt as Moriarty?
“Well, of course, we’re gigantic Brad Pitt fans. I think he’s a brilliant actor and a particularly brilliant character actor. And certainly the role that you’re talking about of Professor Moriarty is a big character to bite off. I hope Brad likes it. Let’s leave it at that. To be political, we should say nothing. But, he’s wonderful. We couldn’t be bigger fans of Brad. So, we’ll see what happens. It’s going to be an interesting film to watch. We can say nothing about this.”
They hope Brad likes it which seems that he’ll be checking out the script and part. Pitt has worked with Ritchie before and I wouldn’t be surprised if we hear confirmation that he will be Moriarty Sherlock Holmes 2 in the near future.
While I thought Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law were perfect in their roles, I didn’t like the villain or plot of Sherlock Holmes that much, despite my love of Mark Strong as an actor. I found it too simple and contrived, especially the conspiracy aspect of it and focus put on setting up the sequel. I have higher expectations from Sherlock Holmes 2 now that we know the characters and world Ritchie is bringing us (Guy Ritchie dropped Lobo to do Sherlock Holmes 2). I hope Brad Pitt is involved.
Sherlock Holmes 2 starts shooting this June and will likely release in the first half of 2011.
Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes.
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