With ‘Sherlock’ making it at the San Diego Comic-Con on Sunday, actors Benedict Cumberbatch and Amanda Abbington were joined by the show co-creator Mark Gatiss, executive producer Steven Moffatt and producer Sue Vertue.
Discussing the mystery drama, the production team opened up about the things to come in the fourth season for the skilled detective, played by Cumberbatch, and his longtime partner Dr. John Watson, portrayed by Martin Freeman.
Moderated by Chris Hardwick, the ‘Sherlock’ panel released a teaser trailer for the upcoming installment, which is set for a release date on PBS in 2017.
Although Cumberbatch did not originally make plans to join the panel, the ‘Doctor Strange’ star announced on PBS’ official Twitter account that he would be making an appearance.
Several issues that the team addressed including comparisons between ‘Sherlock’ and ‘Doctor Strange.’
“Sherlock’s a lot more strange, I think, than Strange is,” Cumberbatch said, explaining that Strange has a more human character while Sherlock is merely working on it. “The crossovers are slight.”
In the upcoming Marvel Comics film adaptation, the 40-year-old actor plays a skilled martial artist with ample knowledge of medical and magical elements. He remains one of the most powerful sorcerers as he is a competent surgeon.
In discussing the ‘Sherlock’ Victorian special, Gatiss jokingly said that one of the main differences with the regular series is that the upcoming episode “was much more expensive.”
With a more serious tone, he explained the history behind Sherlock Holmes, stating, “We thought it’d be brilliant to go right back to the beginning.”
Moreover, Cumberbatch was thrilled with the show’s ability to “straddle both eras,” and the way with which he will play his role with a different approach.
“There’s something slightly more severe,” he said of the Victorian version. He also quipped that his Victorian version’s hair, which brushed back neatly instead of a kinky head, was obviously easier to maintain.
As for Mary’s growth in the series, Abbington opened up about how her character, who was revealed to be an ex-assassin in the previous season, has progressed through the episodes.
“I think she’s so well-rounded as a character,” the actress said. “Every character in this series is flawed in some way and that’s so much more interesting to watch and play.”
In addition, while the panelists did not reveal plenty of details, Gatiss confirmed that they only have two weeks of shooting left, and will be filming an “enormous scene” this week.
“It’s really dark. It’s the darkest Steven and Mark have written,” Abbington described the scene.
Gatiss, Moffat, and Vertue even mentioned three key names that further caught the interest of fans; these include ‘Thatcher,’ ‘Smith’ and Sherrinford.’
In an earlier report by Digital Spy, Moffat assured fans they can “expect tragedy as well as adventure” in the new installment, which will have a darker tone.
“I do think our plan is devastating. We’ve practically reduced our cast to tears telling them the plan… we’re probably more excited than we’ve ever been about Sherlock,” the director shared in an interview.
The co-creator also clarified that the team seeks to point the crime drama series towards a direction that has not been used in the past seasons.
“It will be challenging place to go. We always start with a re-introduction that builds toward a darker climax — we might just be going darker [from the outset]. We got a very, very good set of ideas,” Moffat teased.