First footage for Mr Holmes, starring Ian McKellen as a retired Sherlock


Miramax Films has released a clip for the upcoming crime-drama film, Mr Holmes. Previously entitled A Slight Trick of the Mind, the footage shows Ian McKellen (The Lord of the Rings, X-Men) as an elderly Sherlock walking the countryside, aided by a young boy.

The two humour each other of Sherlock’s age, with his failing memory compelling him to revisit old cases. The film also stars Laura Linney as housekeeper Mrs Munro. Tranquil in a peaceful idyll, this is a severe departure from the many younger Sherlock portrayals of late.

Reworked for the screen by Jeffrey Hatcher and Bill Condon, Mr Holmes is an adaptation of the novel A Slight Trick of the Mind by Mitch Cullen, which sees a retired Holmes as a budding beekeeper in the countryside. The book’s synopsis states:

It is 1947, and the long-retired Sherlock Holmes, now 93, lives in a remote Sussex farmhouse with his housekeeper and her young son. He tends to his bees, writes in his journal, and grapples with the diminishing powers of his mind. But in the twilight of his life, as people continue to look to him for answers, Holmes revisits a case that may provide him with answers of his own to questions he didn’t even know he was asking–about life, about love, and about the limits of the mind’s ability to know. A novel of exceptional grace and literary sensitivity, A Slight Trick of the Mind is a brilliant imagining of our greatest fictional detective and a stunning inquiry into the mysteries of human connection.

Portraying the most recent incarnation (as of February 2015) of the consulting detective at 221B Baker Street, Ian McKellen joins a long of line actors in the current resurgence of Sherlock Holmes. Benedict Cumberbatch plays a somewhat dour Sherlock for the BBC TV series alongside Martin Freeman as John Watson. Jonny Lee Miller stars as a relocated Sherlock in Manhattan in CBS‘s Elementary, controversially co-starring with Lucy Liu as Joan Watson. And Robert Downey Jr. plays an effusive Holmes with Jude Law as John Watson in the 2009 film Sherlock Holmes and its 2011 sequel Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.

Directed by Bill Condon, no official release date has been set for Mr Holmes, but the clip does say it will be “In Theatres Summer 2015”.


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