‘Sherlock Holmes 3’ Pushed Back Again For Good Reason, Release Set For 2021

Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr attend the 'Sherlock Holmes' premiere
Carlos Alvarez / Getty Images

It’s been almost a decade since fans of the crime-solving detective got to watch Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson on the big screen. The last film, released in December 2011, has had fans itching for more of Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr., and it looks like the wait is going to be prolonged even more.

Following a nightmarish production disaster, the third installment of the films is set to be pushed back again, with a new release date set for 2021, 10 years after A Game Of Shadows was released.

Although the third movie was already being talked about when the last one was released, it’s been an uphill battle getting it together. According to Screen Rant, it’s not just Downey Jr.’s rather time consuming commitment to the Marvel Cinematic Universe that has resulted in the lengthy delay between the second and third films.

The publication posits that part of the reason for the delay could also be attributed to Warner Bros.’s desire to have the original creative team back at the helm for the third movie, given the raging success they had with the first two movies. This would include director Guy Ritchie, who has not yet been confirmed for the film, though Law and Downey Jr. have.

At the moment, Ritchie is committed to other productions, including the live-action remake of Aladdin being released later this year. Given the time it would take to dedicate to a worthy third installment of Sherlock Holmes, it makes sense that the movie would be pushed back if Ritchie’s prior commitments will cut the time he has to film it short.

Despite these perfectly plausible reasons for pushing the release back a year, the Christmas 2021 release will have a lot to fight with. Hotel Transylvania 4, Wicked, and Avatar 3 are all set to be released at the same time, which will give Sherlock Holmes 3 some stiff competition at the box office if it hopes to be another hit.

Instead of Sherlock Holmes 3, the previous December 2020 spot will go to another Warner Bros. film that has not yet been confirmed or even titled. The December 2021 release date has also knocked a different animated film from Warner Bros. off the docket.

Then there are the storyline issues for the third film. So far, scripts from the original screenwriters Drew Pearce and James Coyne have been chucked, along with newer versions of the story written through a writer’s room that included Nicole Perlman and Gary Whitta. Apparently, the new script in development is being created by Narcos’ Chris Brancato.

At this stage, it would likely take a miracle to actually get this film created and released. By the time the script and director are ready and waiting, the actors may again be committed to other projects.