Robert Stephens - "The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes" (1970)
|Robert Stephens (right) and Colin Blakely (left)|
as Holmes and Watson in Billy Wilder's "The Private
Life of Sherlock Holmes" (1970)
Despite the fact that Stephens does not exhibit a profile which complies with the original Holmes description, Stephens looks quite distinguished in the deerstalker and Inverness. Stephens' Holmes suffers both from some unspecified melancholia and displays an overt cockiness unrivaled in any other Sherlockian interpretation. While confronting his brother Mycroft (played by the always-welcome Christopher Lee), who has received a secret message, only to attempt to hide it from the preying eyes of his brother, Sherlock counters: "Why don't you just crumple it up and eat it?"
"The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes" performed badly in the box office upon its release in 1970, and star Robert Stephens suffered a nervous breakdown during filming. However today, the movie is regarded as one of the very best Sherlock Holmes films ever to have been - and features one of the greatest Sherlock Holmes interpretations ever committed to screen.
On the next installment of "The Case of the Disregarded Detectives," I will examine one of the most overlooked Sherlock Holmes actors - whose career as the great detective was overshadowed by the conception of the Granada series with Jeremy Brett. An actor by the name of Ian Richardson.