Steven Moffat, the genius creator behind the phenomenal Benedict Cumberbatch modern-day twist on Sherlock Holmes, Sherlock, has come out and criticised the American rip-off remake, Elementary, currently in production.
Elementary, which has much of the same format of Sherlock, is being produced by a separate company in America, and is not approved or connected to the hit BBC drama, and Moffat has warned that he is prepared to “take action” against it if there are too many similarities, or if the show makes Sherlock look bad.
Moffat, who is also the brains behind Doctor Who and who was even awarded the Bafta Special Award by Doctor Who star Matt Smith and Sherlock actor Benedict Cumberbatch at the recent award ceremony, is mostly concerned that the remake will cheapen the Sherlock brand.
In a recent interview with IGN, Moffat admitted that he had been left disappointed with the way in which the network behind Elementary, CBS, had handled the remake, commenting: “We weren’t ready to do [a US remake] yet, [CBS] said, “We’re great people to come to, we’re full of integrity,” – a few weeks later, we discovered they were just going ahead and doing it anyway.
“So that was another example of what happens in LA television, I suppose. I wasn’t very impressed by it. I haven’t had good experiences in general with that lot.”
Going on to describe the network’s behaviour as “pretty remarkable”, he added: “It’s tough. If [Elementary is] bad, it debases the coinage of our show [or] if it’s too like our show, we’ll have to take action.”
Despite this vote of no confidence by his boss, Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch seemed to be more enthusiastic about the US show, commenting in a recent PBS Q&A session in New York: “As we already know with the Downey Jr movie franchise that there’s room enough for two [Sherlock Holmes projects], so why not three?
“[Elementary will] be different and I don’t think it’ll take away the love for ours, and there’s no reason to be churlish or bitter about them or what they’re trying to do.”
There has been much speculation over how the two shows will differ from one another, with the boldest one being the casting of Charlie’s Angel’s star, Lucy Liu, as Dr Watson, played by Martin Freeman in Sherlock, who will be the first ever female cast in that role.
Watch the trailer for Elementary below, and let us know if you think its too similar or if it cheapens the Sherlock brand: