When word got out that Elementary — CBS’ Sherlock drama — would feature a female Watson (Lucy Liu) opposite Jonny Lee Miller’s Holmes, many of the iconic sleuth’s fans got their knickers in a knot.
However, Benedict Cumberbatch, who currently portrays the detective on PBS’ Emmy-nominated Sherlock, was not one of them. In fact, he’s remained altogether mum about the controversial gender switch… at least until now.
“If I were the [producer], I’d be frightened of the dynamic of male friendship that you’d lose,” he confesses to TVLine, “because that is obviously the bedrock of the books as well. [Now] there might be sexual tension between Joan [Watson] and Sherlock, which is [a different dynamic than you’d have] between the two men. So, that’s a new thing to explore.”
And not necessarily a bad thing to explore. Cumberbatch — who is friends with Miller and even appeared opposite him in the UK stage production of Frankenstein — believes the world is big enough for multiple interpretations of Sherlock. (And, having seen the jolly good pilot, I’m inclined to agree.) “I wish them luck, I really do,” the actor insists. “I think it will be great. It will be a different spin on it, because obviously, theirs is modern-day as well, so it needs to be different from ours, and I think the more differences, the better, to be honest.
“I don’t see why they shouldn’t co-exist with us,” he adds, “I don’t think they’ll steal our audience. I think people who are Holmes fans who think they do a good job of it will have a treat in watching ours and the films. So I wish them good luck!”Follow @MichaelAusiello