Thankfully it looks like the next hiatus might not be quite so long as the two-year stretch between seasons two and three, because showrunners Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have already planned the twists and turns of the next two seasons.
American viewers who are waiting to watch season three until it comes out (legally) in the US, be ye reassured: There are no spoilers behind the jump.
At an advance screening of the season three finale “The Last Vow,” Moffat opened up about the future of his wildly popular show, saying:
“Rather excitingly, Mark and I, for no particular reason, we just got out of the rain and sat at the top of the [Sherlock] production bus… and we just started plotting out what we could do in the future. And we plotted out the whole of series four and five. So we have got plans – but our plans don’t tend to be ‘Let’s blow up the world or cast the most famous person in the world.’ They tend to be ‘What exciting twists and turns can we add to this?’ And I think we’ve got some crackers! The ideas we had that day, I thought were the best we’ve ever had.”
That comment about famous people throws a bit of cold water on fannish hopes and dreams that Doctor Who alum Matt Smith might put in an appearance on the show. It was always unlikely: The source of the speculation is Moffat saying he’d be open to casting Smith if the role was right, but he wouldn’t want to stunt cast him. So basically “There’s nothing to say I actually will cast him, but I know people want to hear that I might.” Make whatever critiques you want of Moffat (and oh, we have), but dude knows how to do press.
As always, when a season of Sherlock comes out depends on the availability of its two leads. The Hobbit movies are all but done, which will probably leave Martin Freeman with a hole in his schedule that, as of yet, is only being filled by FX’s Fargo miniseries. But for Benedict Cumberbatch the end of being the world’s vainest dragon probably won’t make much of a difference, because he just keeps picking up projects.