Get ready for more pugilistic action and wise-cracking detective work, because the Sherlock Holmes franchise is back in business. Warner Bros has set Sherlock Holmes 3 for a prime Christmas release date on December 25, 2020. Robert Downey Jr. will return as the titular literary icon and detective extraordinaire alongside Jude Law, who stars as Sherlock’s famous sidekick, Dr. Watson.
Guy Ritchie directed the first two films in the Warners franchise, but no director is currently attached for Part 3. The script comes from Chris Brancato, writer for critically acclaimed series Narcos and Hannibal. Ritchie’s last two efforts at Warner Bros., the underrated The Man from UNCLE and King Arthur, both disappointed critically and at the box office, so it’s possible the Ritchie-Warners partnership has seen better days. Ritchie is currently keeping busy with Disney’s live-action Aladdin remake, which is slated to arrive in theaters on May 24, 2019. That leaves the filmmaker with plenty of time to come back on board for Holmes if that’s what he and the studio want to do.
It’s been quite the wait for a new Sherlock movie, and the release date puts Sherlock Holmes 3 in theaters nine years after the first sequel, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, which arrived in theaters Christmas 2011 and went on to earn $186.8 domestically and $545.4 million at the worldwide box office. The first film hit theaters in 2009, earning slightly more domestically, with $209 at the box office, but slightly less overseas with $524 worldwide.
You have to go back to 2016 for the last time we got a significant update on the film. At the time, Warner Bros. and Downey Jr.’s production team set a writers room to crack the mystery of the threequel script that included writers like Nicole Perlman (Guardians of the Galaxy), Gary Whitta (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Geneva Dworet-Robertson (Tomb Raider).
Sherlock will have some pretty stiff competition at the Christmas box office in 2020. James Cameron’s Avatar sequel, which took even longer to get made than Sherlock Holmes 3, is arriving on December 18, 2020. The animated sequel Sing 2 will also arrive in theaters on Christmas Day.