The BBC has now officially confirmed that Sherlock will return for season 4, but not before fans are treated to the airing of a special bonus episode.
Hartswood Films, who produce Sherlock, are set to release the special episode before returning again with a full, three-part fourth series. Combined, these four episodes represent the longest run so far for the hit detective-drama.
We’ve still got a while to wait yet though. Filming on the special will start in January 2015, with shooting for the series taking place later next year. There’s currently no word on any potential Sherlock season 4 air dates, but we’ll bring you more news on that as its released.
Once again leading the cast lineup will be British actors Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Dr John Watson. Both stars have been busy working away since series 3, with Cumberbatch appearing in numerous Hollywood movies and Freeman starring in the excellent Fargo TV series. Being a big fan of Fargo, it’ll take a while before I can watch Martin without thinking to myself ‘Aw Jeez Lester’.
Talking to the BBC about the return of Sherlock, co-creator, writer and executive producer Steven Moffat said: “A special, plus a new series of three episodes – it’s a record-breaking run! Of course, it’s far too early to say what’s coming, but we’re reasonably confident that the very next thing to happen to Sherlock and John, is the very last thing you’d expect…”
To that, fellow co-creator, writer and executive producer Mark Gatiss, added: “Series Four! At last ! It’s always special to return to Sherlock but this time it’s even more special as we’re doing… a Special! Not only THAT, we’ll then be shooting three more episodes which will take Sherlock and John Watson into deeper and darker water than ever before. The whole Sherlock team are terrifically excited to return for four new adventures. The Game is on – again!”
In addition to its popularity amongst UK viewers, the Sherlock series has now become a worldwide television hit, including international broadcasts in the USA, China, Russia, Germany and India.