Bill Condon's 'Mr. Holmes' Lands U.S. Home With Miramax, Roadside

Bill Condon Headshot - P 2014
AP Images

Bill Condon Headshot - P 2014

The Sherlock Holmes tale stars Ian McKellen and Laura Linney

Continuing to ramp up, a reinvigorated Miramax has acquired all U.S. rights to Bill Condon's unique Sherlock Holmes tale Mr. Holmes, starring Ian McKellen and Laura Linney. Miramax will partner with Roadside Attractions on the theatrical release of the movie, now in post-production.

The British film, previously titled A Slight Trick of the Mind, is a new take on the iconic detective. Set in 1947, an aging Holmes returns from a journey to Japan, where, in search of a rare plant with powerful restorative qualities, he has witnessed the devastation of nuclear warfare.

Now, in his remote seaside Sussex farmhouse, Holmes faces the end of his days with only the company of his housekeeper (Linney) and her young son, Roger, whom he comes to rely on. Grappling with the diminishing powers of his mind, Holmes comes to rely upon the boy as he revisits an unsolved case that forced him into retirement, and searches for answers to the mysteries of life and love before it's too late.

Mr. Holmes is based on Mitch Cullin's novel A Slight Trick of the Mind. Jeffrey Hatcher wrote the adapted script.

Mr. Holmes is a smart, exciting film that has attracted the highest caliber director, cast and producers, and it is a perfect fit for Miramax,” said Miramax chairman Thomas J. Barrack Jr.

Added Roadside co-president Eric d'Arbeloff: "Bill Condon and Ian McKellen's collaboration on Gods and Monsters continues to inspire us, so we are very excited to join with Miramax in releasing Mr. Holmes, their fantastic take on the world's favorite master sleuth."

Anne Carey, producer of Anton Corbijn’s The American, is producing Mr. Holmes through her new venture Archer Gray Productions alongside Iain Canning and Emile Sherman of See-Saw Films (The King’s Speech, Shame). Aviv Giladi and Len Blavatnik of Al Film are exec producing with Christine Langan of BBC Films and Amy Nauiokas of Archer Gray.

“We are thrilled to have been involved in making Mr. Holmes, which has all the hallmarks of great British filmmaking, and with fantastic performances from Ian McKellen, Laura Linney and the rest of the cast, it will be a great draw for audiences in North America and beyond," said Giladi, CEO of the London-based Al Film.

BBC is co-financing the film, which is being handled internationally by FilmNation.

News of the Miramax deal comes just days after the company cast Fifty Shades of Grey star Jamie Dornan in its psychological thriller The 9th Life of Louis Drax. Alexandre Aja (Horns, The Hills Have Eyes) will direct. Louis Drax, which begins shooting in Vancouver in October, marks Miramax's return to the film production business after a long dormant spell.

Miramax is also currently developing new television series, including Gangs of New York with Martin Scorsese and Robert Rodriguez’s From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series, recently renewed for a second season.