Who is your favorite Sherlock Holmes?

Posted: March 31, 2013

Photograph of Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes

Peter Cushing plays a pretty effective Sherlock Holmes, but he is one of many actors who have played the role. Who is your favorite Sherlock Holmes? According to the Guinness Book of World Records, Holmes has been the most performed character in movie history. Seventy-five different actors have portrayed him beginning as early as 1900. There have been Robert Stephens, Nichol Williamson, Christopher Plummer and even Christopher Lee and of course Robert Downey, Jr. Neal Gabler’s favorite Holmes is Basil Rathbone who played him in 14 movies.

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  • Lucy Muller

    Jeremy Brett was the absolute best!!

    • Brenda Kaye Lester

      I remember being in my car when the news came on the radio that he had died. I had to stop the car because I was crying so hard. Have you seen him as Freddie in MY FAIR LADY?

  • disqus_RBvlJSPGK1

    Benedict Cumberbach – so very good…

  • Denise Roccia

    Basil Rathbone for sure.

  • Ed Arnold

    Basil Rathbone is my favorite Holmes. I have not seen any other actor worthy of getting noticed.

  • Michael Briney

    I loved Jeremy Brett, too. He was a brilliant actor who made fascinating choices that worked perfectly. I miss him!

    • Brenda Kaye Lester

      I miss him too, but I have the DVDS.

  • Ross De Grusso

    Basil Rathbone WAS Holmes !….He and Nigel Bruce were the best ever.

    • Brenda Kaye Lester

      I don’t like the fuddie-duddie Watson portrayed by Bruce. That is not the true Watson.

  • Chelsea Goodwin

    What of Tom Baker, the only actor so far as I know besides Peter Cushing to play both Doctor Who and Sherlock

  • Brenda Kaye Lester

    Without a doubt, he is Jeremy Brett. I love Cushing, too, but the soul of Sherlock Holmes was in Jeremy.

  • Rivka Rachum

    Jeremy Brett. No question!

  • Denise Giardullo

    Jeremy Brett was the personification of Holmes!

  • LynnWM

    I had always regarded Basil Rathbone as the quintessential Sherlock, but Benedict Cumberbatch is brilliant.

  • Monte Kaplan

    I’ll go against the grain and say Robert Stephens.

  • guest

    I like the classics but I also really liked Rupert Everett and am sad he only did one or maybe two. I liked both Everett and the version of the character written for him to play.

    Cumberbatch plays in a version that is fun and bizarro. I think the best Watson is the one written for this version.

  • Luis Lopez

    Basil Rathbone as Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Watson are the best. The rest are copies.

  • Jon David

    Without a doubt, the 1940s Sherlock Holmes movies starring Basil Rathbone are without compare! (I will say that I did like Rupert Everett’s 2004 effort in the Case of the Silk Stocking.)

  • Richard Hebron

    Basil Rathbone was so good portraying Sherlock Holmes that he became type-cast in the role. He was by far the best Holmes.