The actor plays the iconic role of Sherlock Holmes, the older brother of the titular character played by Millie Bobby Brown. But the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is suing Enola Holmes for copyright infringement.
The lawsuit zeroes in on the “warmer” character of Sherlock Holmes. Conan Doyle’s estate argues this characterization is not part of the public domain of the author’s work, per NME.
In an interview with GQ, Cavill said that he has no opinion on the controversy from a legal point of view.
“Honestly, I don’t have a take on it,” the actor said. “The legal stuff is above my pay grade.”
However, Cavill said that the Netflix movie showed a different side to his character than in previous Sherlock Holmes iterations, such as the film starring Robert Downey Jr or the TV show with Benedict Cumberbatch. In these productions, the character was portrayed as aloof, cold and unfeeling. But Sherlock Holmes is shown to have a special emotional connection with his little sister in the Netflix film.
The Conan Doyle estate filed the lawsuit on June 2020. However, those named in the lawsuit — such as Netflix, Legendary Pictures, Brown’s production company, as well as the writer and director — have not issued statements.
The movie was also released as scheduled, meaning there was nothing legally stopping Enola Holmes to screen.
Enola Holmes brings a fresh take on a classic tale about the famous detective. Nancy Springer wrote the book series for young adults and released six books in total.
Netflix adapted the first book, “The Case of the Missing Marquess” (2006), with scribe Jack Thorne and director Harry Bradbeer. The film became the most viewed content on the streaming platform following its release on Sept. 23.
Viewers are now hoping for a follow-up and critics are saying that Enola Holmes could be the streamer’s franchise film. Bradbeer and Brown told Deadline that they want to do a sequel.
Brown said that her character’s story is not yet over and she would like to work with Bradbeer again.
“This has to happen,” Brown said.
Sam Claflin, who plays the oldest Holmes’ brother Mycroft, said that his door is always open to return to Enola Holmes and he agrees there’s still enough material to explore. Cavill, on the other hand, has numerous filming commitments so he could be the busiest to tie down to return to their Victorian-inspired set.
Image courtesy of Sue Lukenbaugh/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)
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