Casting: SHERLOCK HOLMES Gets His Irene Adler, Villain, But No Napoleon Of Crime

Casting is starting to ramp up on Guy Ritchie’s upcoming, more adventure oriented Sherlock Holmes. We already know that Robert Downey, Jr. is set to play the iconic Victorian-era sleuth with Jude Law tagging along as his faithful companion Dr. Watson.

Now we know that Ritchie has found Holmes’ love interest and criminal foil for the film.

Slash Film is reporting that Rachel McAdams has been cast as Irene Adler, the object of Holmes’ affections in the film. Those familiar with the original Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes stories know that although she only appeared in the July, 1891 story “A Scandal In Bohemia,” Adler “was always thewoman” and her effect on Holmes would be mentioned in four other of Doyle’s stories, as well as Holmes fiction written by other authors.

Meanwhile, The Hollywood Reporter‘s story on McAdams’ casting also names Mark Strong, who appears in Ritchie’s upcoming RockNRolla, as being set to play the film’s main villain who goes by the name of Blackwood.

While some hardcore Sherlock Holmes fans may be upset that the detective’s famous nemesis, Professor Moriarty, the Napoleon of Crime, doesn’t look like he’s making an appearance, I have to say that I am a little glad. Let Ritchie use the first film to define this new version of Holmes and Watson. If successful, there will be plenty of time to introduce Moriarty in the inevitable sequel. Besides, you don’t want to use up all the good characters in your first film. Do we really want a situation like the Superman films, with the hero facing off against the same arch-enemy movie after movie after movie?

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About Rich Drees 6964 Articles
A film fan since he first saw that Rebel Blockade Runner fleeing the massive Imperial Star Destroyer at the tender age of 8 and a veteran freelance journalist with twenty years experience writing about film and pop culture. He is a member of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle.
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john gibbon
john gibbon
September 25, 2008 4:31 pm

Hmm, this could be interesting. If I’m correct, the villain name is actually a reference to Algernon Blackwood, the fiction writer who wrote the John Silence sleuth stories.