You might have a new favorite incarnation of the world's most famous detective soon.
It was announced Thursday at the Toronto International Film Festival that Sir Ian McKellen will add Sherlock Holmes to the list of iconic characters he's embodied -- a list which already includes Hamlet, Richard III, David Copperfield, Gandalf and, oh yeah, Magneto -- when he teams up with director Bill Condon for the Holmes film A Slight Trick of the Mind.
The film, based on Mitch Cullin's book of the same name, will follow an aging, retired Holmes as he begins to lose his memory and looks back on a haunting case. Here's the synopsis:
"In 1947, Sherlock Holmes, long retired, lives in a sleepy Sussex village with his housekeeper and her amateur-sleuthing son. But far from living out a peaceful retirement, he is haunted by an unsolved case from fifty years ago. He remembers only fragments: a confrontation with an angry husband, a secret bond with his beautiful but unstable wife.
"With his legendary mental powers on the wane, and without his old sidekick Watson, Holmes is faced with the toughest case of his life — a case that might finally reveal to him the mysteries of the human heart."
Condon's recent work includes the last two films in the Twilight franchise, Breaking Dawn parts one and two, but don't hold that against him. He's also earned massive critical praise for films like Kinsey, Dreamgirls and Gods and Monsters, the 1998 film about the last days of Frankenstein director James Whale, which starred McKellen as the legendary filmmaker. That film earned McKellen his first Oscar nomination, a Golden Globe nomination and numerous film festival and film critics circle awards for Best Actor, and earned Condon an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay.
So, we've got two men with a history of making cinema magic together reteaming to take on a Sherlock Holmes story that'll definitely be set apart from the Benedict Cumberbatch, Robert Downey Jr. and Jonny Lee Miller incarnations of the character. In an age saturated with Sherlock, it seems McKellen is poised to leave a different kind of mark on Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary creation.
The film is set to start shooting in April, so hopefully we'll see it by 2015. What do you think? Are you excited to see McKellen join the distinguished fraternity of actors who've played Sherlock?