From Walesonline: ANOTHER major television drama is set to be filmed in Wales next year, as the classic saga of Sherlock Holmes is updated for 2009.
Sherlock – a modern take on the life of Sherlock Holmes – has been co-created by the partnership of two big-hitting writers, Doctor Who’s Steven Moffet and The League of Gentleman’s Mark Gatiss, who has also written for Doctor Who.
The BBC drama will star Benedict Cumberbatch. His credits include Starter For Ten, Stuart and A Life Backwards, and Martin Freeman of The Office playing his loyal sidekick Dr John Watson.
The show will be set on the streets of present-day London and Rupert Graves will play Inspector Lestrade.
Sherlock is described by the BBC as a “thrilling, funny, fast-paced take on the crime drama genre”.
The details from Arthur Conan Doyle’s original books remain – they live at the same address, have the same names and somewhere out there, in the London of 2009, their enemy Moriarty is still waiting for them.
Moffat said: “Everything that matters about Holmes and Watson is the same.
“Conan Doyle’s original stories were never about frock coats and gas light, they’re about brilliant detection, dreadful villains and blood-curdling crimes – and frankly, the hell with the crinoline.
“Other detectives have cases, Sherlock Holmes has adventures and that’s what matters.
“Mark and I have been talking about this project for years, on long train rides to Cardiff for Doctor Who.
“Quite honestly we’d still be talking about it if Sue Vertue of Hartswood Films – conveniently, also my wife – hadn’t sat us down for lunch and got us to work.”
The drama is the latest in a long line of productions filmed in Wales, including Doctor Who, Torchwood and, most recently, Merlin.
The amount of money spent on making films and television programmes in Wales has quadrupled to £31m in the space of just five years.
Hollywood A-listers such as Angelina Jolie, Johnny Depp and Christopher Walken have all filmed in Wales in the past few years, while Welsh actor Matthew Rhys recently starred with Keira Knightley and Sienna Miller in The Edge of Love – one of the most high-profile films to be made in the country.
The hour-long pilot drama of Sherlock, which is due for release next autumn and could be turned into a series, is sure to consolidate Wales’ reputation as a fantastic filming location for both movies and television shows.
Gatiss said: “The fact that Steven, myself and millions of others are still addicted to Conan Doyle’s brilliant stories is testament to their indestructibility.
“They’re as vital, lurid, thrill- ing and wonderful as they ever were.
“It’s a dream come true to be making a new TV series and in Benedict and Martin we have the perfect Holmes and Watson for our time.”
Sherlock will shoot in Wales and on location in London in January 2009.
Piers Wenger, head of drama at BBC Wales, said: “Our Sherlock is a dynamic superhero in a modern world, an arrogant, genius sleuth driven by a desire to prove himself cleverer than the perpetrator and the police, everyone in fact.”
The announcement follows Robert Downey Jr recently filming scenes in the lead role for a big screen version of Sherlock Holmes, directed by Guy Ritchie.