‘Sherlock’ Star Benedict Cumberbatch Weighs In On ‘Elementary’

Cumberbatch offers his thoughts on CBS' vastly different take on Sherlock Holmes.

Blair Marnellby Blair Marnell

Ever since his debut in 1887,  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes has captured imaginations worldwide thanks in part to the Great Detective's impressive ability to solve nearly any mystery and his iconic friendship with Dr. John Watson.
Naturally, there have been some wildly different versions of Sherlock Holmes in the many film and TV adaptations of the character. This fall, CBS will air "Elementary," a new television series that finds Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) living in New York and partnered up with Dr. Joan Watson (Lucy Liu) during the present day. However, there is already an internationally popular modern day Sherlock Holmes series on BBC called "Sherlock," with Benedict Cumberbatch as the title character and Martin Freeman as Dr. Watson.
"Sherlock" co-creator Steven Moffat has made no secret of his distaste for CBS' incarnation of Sherlock Holmes; in addition to previously noting that CBS approached BBC about adapting "Sherlock" before moving on with "Elementary." However, Cumberbatch has maintained his silence on the subject, until now.
Speaking with TVLine, Cumberbatch said “If I were the [producer of 'Elementary'], I’d be frightened of the dynamic of male friendship that you’d lose. Because that is obviously the bedrock of the books as well. [Now] there might be sexual tension between Joan [Watson] and Sherlock, which is [a different dynamic than you'd have] between the two men. So, that’s a new thing to explore.” 
However, the "Elementary" producers reiterated that their Holmes and Watson will not have sexual tension between them during a TCA meeting with the press. 
Cumberbatch once co-starred with Miller in a theatrical production of Frankenstein, thus it's no surprise to hear reports that they are friends with each other. Cumberbatch also had some kind words for "Elementary" as an olive branch of sorts.
“I wish them luck, I really do,” related Cumberbatch. “I think it will be great. It will be a different spin on it, because obviously, theirs is modern-day as well, so it needs to be different from ours, and I think the more differences, the better, to be honest. I don’t see why they shouldn’t co-exist with us. I don’t think they’ll steal our audience. I think people who are Holmes fans who think they do a good job of it will have a treat in watching ours and the films. So I wish them good luck!”
"Elementary" will premiere on Thursday, September 27 on CBS. A third season of "Sherlock" will reportedly begin production in early 2013.