Sherlock Holmes, created by author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, may be the “most prolific screen character in the history of cinema,” according to Wikipedia. Actors from all fields have pursued roles in Sherlock Holmes productions, including film and television actors such as John Castle, stage actors like John Webb and radio actors like John and Val Gielgud.
The first known film featuring the eccentric investigator is a one-minute single reel film called Sherlock Holmes Baffled which was made in 1900. Five years later the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes; or, Held for Ransom vitagraph was released. Since then, literally thousands of adaptations have been produced, ranging from The Return of Sherlock Holmes (1929), Paramount on Parade (1930) and Sherlock Holmes (1932) to the 2009 version starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law.
Sherlock Holmes and his biographer Dr. John Watson have grown in popularity on television as well. In 1984 British television company Granada Television launched The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, featuring Jeremy Brett. Actor John Castle also appeared on the show as one of the schemers in The Solitary Cyclist. He was later featured in the film version of The Crucifer of Blood as well.
Today, two of the most popular shows on television are contemporary takes on Doyle’s stories, including BBC’s London-based Sherlock and CBS’s Elementary, which takes place in New York City.