All posts filed under: SHERLOCK HOLMES

On Playing Sherlock Holmes

Basil Rathbone, creator of radio’s version of Doyle’s famous sleuth, sees character as part of old England. The following is an article written by Basil Rathbone. Titled “On Playing Sherlock Holmes,” it was published in the March 1940 issue of Radio Varieties. Many persons ask me what is the difference in your feeling when you face the NBC microphone as Sherlock Holmes and when you face the camera. I would be only too willing to oblige them through Radio Varieties except that there is really no difference. In either case, I feel Holmes to be as real as my Dr. Watson, Mr. Nigel Bruce. Like countless millions of Holmes’ admirers throughout the world, I see him as a very part of old England. As I conceive him, and my concept may differ radically with those of Editor Wilton Rosenthal’s readers, Holmes was a man with tremendous powers of concentration. His absorption in his calling was extraordinary. Very properly, he never associated with women; evinced no interest in them. (Imagine what a hell it would have …

Sherlock on Broadway

Basilrathbone.net has an interesting new look at Ouida Rathbone’s slightly infamous SHERLOCK HOLMES stage play. That great, gobbling turkey of 1953, that could be said to have wrecked Rathbone’s Broadway career almost as effectively as his decision to flee Hollywood had destroyed his movie career. For me – and I suspect for anyone who’s been following our journey through Rathbone’s life and work – the article highlights some of those enduring puzzles and contradictions that make BR both fascinating and frustrating as a subject. For example, why was the man who allegedly fled Hollywood because he couldn’t stand being Holmes any longer starring in a Holmes play on Broadway just seven years later? And if it’s true that Rathbone was already trying to launch this vehicle as early as 1946, then that question becomes not just relevant but crucial, because it would mean he quit his massively lucrative Sherlock movie and radio contracts, fled Hollywood, alienating friends and colleagues in the process, all because he could not stand another moment of playing Holmes – and …

The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – RADIO

Originally posted on Once upon a screen…:
In honor of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930). ♦ The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes was an old-time radio show which aired in the USA from October 2, 1939 to July 7, 1947. Originally, the show starred Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes and Nigel Bruce as Dr. Watson. Together, they starred in 220 episodes which aired weekly on Mondays from 8:30 to 9:00pm. Bromo Quinine sponsored some of the earlier programs on the NBC Blue Network and for a period Parker Pen was the sponsor. The show first aired on the Blue Network but later moved to the Mutual Broadcasting System. Basil Rathbone’s last episode as the famous detective was “The Singular Affair of the Baconian Cipher.” He was eager to separate himself from the cast type of Holmes, and even though the show’s sponsor Petri Wine offered him generous pay to continue, he decided to move on. Once he did, the sponsor did as well, and Tom Conway took the starring role, though Nigel Bruce got top…

“Elementary My Dear Rathbone” – 1946

Neve’s note – This article first appeared in EVERYBODY’S DIGEST, in 1946. Rathbone was to quit Holmes, Hollywood and his friendship with Bruce within a few months of it going to press. Click on the pdf button to download a copy of the original article Elementary My Dear Rathbone By Jules Archer (Everybody’s Digest, 1946) Basil Rathbone was about to give the business to Dr(sic) Moriarty in another Sherlock Holmes film, when Denis Conan Doyle, scion of the world’s most famous whodunit writer visited the set. Rehearsals were stalled, while Doyle threw his weight around, passing unsolicited judgments on the props, costumes and sets.  Rathbone gnawed his fingernails. “Hmmm,”  deliberated the visitor, scrutinizing the Hollywood version of Baker Street. “Ya-as, it’s veddy much like my fahthah’s description, veddy much indeed!” Nigel Bruce, more widely recognized as Dr Watson made ominous sounds. Unable to stand any more, he whispered something in Rathbone’s ear. The razor-nosed film sleuth reacted with amusement. “Sounds rather silly,” he said, “but let’s do it.” Rehearsals finally began, with Doyle shunted tactfully …

ghostbees

And how can we not sooner or later feature the charming ghostbees Sherlock Holmes series? It’s not strictly Baz, of course, but since the artist is named Basil, and since this Sherlock looks so like our boy, I think we can blur our definitions. This one is called “A Sensible Idea.”… Visit the ghostbees site to see more.

THE BAZ AT ALL HALLOW’S

So it’s Halloween!… Light your pumpkin lantern, extinguish the lights (if you’re in lower Manhattan you can skip this step), throw a log on the stove, get a glass of wine and a slice of pie and settle down for a selection of reader-nominated excerpts of The Baz at All Hallow’s… First, suggested by Cinegeek, some music…. Are the candles flickering a little? The drapes billowing as a draft buffets the window? Excellent. Next up, and nominated by Tim is Baz reading THE TELL-TALE HEART by Edgar Allen Poe, with very cool visuals and effects… Change of tone for the next offering, suggested by femgirl, a clip from THE BLACK SLEEP(1956). It was Lugosi’s last film, and Basil looks as if he wishes it was his. Lon Chaney jr plays someone known as Mongo, and Tor Johnson is locked in the cellar. Truly terrifying, but not in a good way. I suffered additional cognitive dissonance the first time I saw this clip as I thought Basil was shouting “Taxi!” and briefly wondered if he’d lost …