Remember way back in 2008, right around the time that the first of Guy Ritchie’s action movie takes on Arthur Conan Doyle‘s Sherlock Holmes character was on the way starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law, when there was a second more comedic Sherlock project in the works starring Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby co-stars Sacha Baron Cohen and Will Ferrell as Holmes and Watson?
The screenplay for the movie was written by Etan Cohen, but the movie didn’t materialize at the time. Now comes word that the project, titled Holmes & Watson, is up and moving again. This time around Ferrell is set to play Holmes instead of Watson and another one of his Talladega Nights co-stars, John C. Reilly, who also starred with Ferrell in Step Brothers, is taking on the role of Watson.
According to the report, Ferrell and Reilly have been looking for another project to work on together for multiple years now. Turns out, all they had to do is peek at Ferrell’s unmade titles from a handful of years ago.
Holmes & Watson will of course be inspired by Conan Doyle’s Sherlock stories, but with that PG-13 comic twist Ferrell and Reilly can deliver so well. The movie is moving quickly, as well. Apparently everyone’s schedules have lined up, and so Sony put it on the fast track with plans to begin production right after Thanksgiving.
Unfortunately, there’s not less Sherlock Holmes projects out there now than there was back in ’08. Ritchie’s movie got a sequel, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, and a third movie is still expected at some point. Ian McKellen had a smaller film titled Mr. Holmes. There’s also TV series Sherlock and Elementary, video games, and so on. But I don’t see a comedic spin on things led by Ferrell and Reilly having much trouble standing out from the crowd.