Let’s start with what we do know, and that’s the new title for the Sherlock Holmes sequel, which is set to star Robert Downey, Jr., Jude Law, Jared Harris, Stephen Fry, and Noomi Rapace. It’s called: Sherlock Holmes and A Game of Shadows.
That’s not only mesmerizingly vague and unhelpful, but it breaks the Sherlock Holmes rules of titling.
However, the new Sherlock Holmes title does tie-in to the snorting, frothing-at-the-mouth, hump-your-computer-monitor scuttled butt going around the movie blog interwebs, which right now is centering on Guy Ritchie. Ritchie, who is not only working on the Sherlock Holmes sequel, but is tied to a remake of Excalibur. He has now been asked to step in and direct the prequel to 300, according to Vulture. Like 300, Xerxes is based on a Frank Miller graphic novel and it was originally developed by 300 director, Zack Snyder.
Now, here’s where it gets interesting. The reason the gig is being offered to Ritchie, instead of Zack Snyder, is not entirely because Snyder is too busy with Superman: Man of Steel (and because time is about to run out on the rights to the property). It’s because research screenings for Snyder’s upcoming Sucker Punch have been less than stellar. Again, according to Vulture, one Warner’s exec stated, “”It was bad; like, really bad. They’re [Warners brass] really not happy with it over there.” Add that to the apparent third act problems with Superman: Man of Steel, the underwhelming receptions for Watchmen and that animated owl movie, and it looks like we have a director problem. That’s not exactly what you want to hear about the guy trying to reboot Superman, after the latest mostly unsuccessful effort. The man has style, but there’s no there there. He’s like the super-slo-mo Brett Ratner.
Of course, there was also a bullshit rumor floated around last week over at Bad Ass Digest from Devin Faraci (normally, the sourpuss who calls out bullshit rumors) that Guy Ritchie was also up for directing a remake of Cannonball Run. According to that rumor, Ritchie was not aware that he was tied to the remake, but in a weird twist — despite his lack of knowledge of the project — he wanted George Clooney for the Burt Reynolds role.
Make of that what you will.
My suggestion: Ritchie should take the casts of Xerxes and Sherlock Holmes, and enroll them in a All-Star Laff-A-Lympics version of the Cannonball Run in which those two teams are pitted against The Avengers. That’s three movies and a cartoon. I call that the perfect studio remake.