Martin Freeman has clarified his comments about Sherlock‘s fans, for the second time. Freeman originally said in an interview that “some of it’s not fun anymore”, with the weight of fan expectation sitting heavily on his Sherlock commitments. The internet, it’s fair to say, made quite a lot of noise about Freeman’s comments.
Freeman already clarified these comments once, saying that “Sherlock is fun” but “elements of it, the pressure, the expectation” are not. The news story and the outrage seemed to go away, until Benedict Cumberbatch was asked in an interview what he made of Freeman’s comments. Cumberbatch issued a stern-sounding reaction, saying, “It’s pretty pathetic if that’s all it takes to let you not want to take a grip of your reality. What, because of expectations?” This sent the internet into overdrive once more.
So now here we are, with an interviewer for The Daily Beast asking Freeman to comment again about Sherlock fan expectations. In the interest of not reposting any comments out of context, here’s The Daily Beast’s full question and Martin Freemans’s full answer from the article:
The Daily Beast: You made headlines recently with comments about fans’ oppressive expectations for Sherlock. Is that dynamic the new normal?
Martin Freeman: I think so. And in a way, it’s the new normal if you’re lucky, because if you’re in something that has a lot of fans, that’s better than being in something that has no fans. My point with Sherlock was that those expectations can be heavy. There’s a certain aspect that some fans are going to run with the ball and make their own thing out of your show—which is completely fair enough, as long as we all acknowledge that that is what is happening. I think when you get into a slightly tail-wagging-the-dog scenario, that gets boring, for me. So when people insist that Sherlock is supposed to be this show, when we decide what show it is, it’s like, “No, this is actually the show we’re making, and that we’ve always made. I know you want to see this happen, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to have to happen.” I want all kinds of things, but they’re not going to happen in life. So that’s what gets, frankly, wearing.
But the show itself, I’m well aware of its importance in my life, both professionally and personally, because I love the show. I’m a fan of the show. Unfortunately, that’s the joy of being quoted out of context, and joy of newspapers needing a headline, even though the headline is not something I ever said at any point in the interview.
There you have it, then. Freeman clearly doesn’t hate Sherlock, even if the fan expectations do get wearing from time to time. Hopefully, this whole thing is resolved now and Freeman won’t be asked to comment on it again.
As it stands, no official plans to shoot more Sherlock episodes have been announced. Of course, we’ll let you know if that changes.