Holmes at last
If you stop Benedict Cumberbatch on the street and ask him, “Aren’t you Sherlock?” brace yourself: When it comes to his role as the scarf-flinging, long-coat wearing crime-solver in the contemporary British version of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Victorian-era detective story, Cumberbatch is a gung-ho, one-man marketing team.
“I go, ‘Yeah, I am. Now tell me: How did you see ‘Sherlock’? When did you see it?” Cumberbatch says. He hopes that when the second season of “Sherlock” begins May 6 on “PBS Masterpiece Mystery!” it will spark the same sort of national obsession as it did when it ran in England.
“That’s the most smug thing I feel about all [the success of “Sherlock”] — that it’s people with brains, with sophisticated tastes, who really enjoy this,” he says. Sherlock geeks pore over ever detail as he and Dr. Watson (Martin Freeman) solve crimes. “They really like the complexities of the character. They follow the humor.”
Lately, Cumberbatch has had plenty of opportunities to wage his “Sherlock” campaign. For the past five months, the 35-year-old Londoner has been living in a 3-bedroom storybook cottage in Venice, Calif., only a 10- minute drive — in a borrowed silver Jaguar — from Sony Studios where he’s currently filming his first mega-budget Hollywood movie — J.J. Abrams’ untitled “Star Trek” sequel.
Has strolling around the same lot where “The Wizard of Oz” was shot lived up to his Technicolor expectations?
“It’s amazing,” Cumberbatch says. “First an Egyptian walks by, then Lady Gaga, then somebody going to a game show.”