Earlier this week rumors surfaced Across the Pond in a UK tabloid that Russell Crowe was in talks to join Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes “re-imagining” (there’s that blasted word again!) as Watson to Robert Downey Jr.’s Sherlock Holmes. But as soon as the news surfaced, it was immediately squashed — by Guy Ritchie himself. And yeah, that would seem to make sense, as Watson is clearly a supporting character, and let’s face it, Russell Crowe ain’t gonna be playing no damn supporting character. So that’s it, right? Crowe is officially out of “Sherlock Holmes”? Not quite, as it turns out.
Latino Review has it on good authority (i.e. they know someone who works in Hollywood who knows someone who told them) that Crowe will definitely not be playing Watson (the role is still up for grabs, apparently, although it was rumored to have been offered to Gerard Butler, who passed), but he IS still involved in the movie. In fact, he might be playing Sherlock Holmes’ greatest nemesis … Professor Moriarty!
Or at least, that’s the rumor from the boys at LR. They’ve been mostly right before, so I wouldn’t dream of making fun of this casting rumor. (Although if it proves to be wrong at a later date, expect plenty of jokes to be had at LR’s expense. That’s just how we roll.)
So, Russell Crowe as Moriarty? Yeah, I could see that. The reasons below:
1) It’s a major role — the MAIN villain. Which means Crowe could share co-headlining credits with RDJ. 2) There is no #2. There’s just the #1. It’s a big enough role that Crowe could justify not being the film’s one major marquee name, ala “3:10 to Yuma”, “Body of Lies”, and “American Gangster”, among the many films Crowe has shared the marquee headlines in.