Thursday, December 29, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Robert Downey Jr Sherlock Holmes 2 premiere in Rome (photo)

Other photos: HERE (click on *spoiler*) ;)

Sherlock Holmes - Gioco di ombre - photocall 11 dic 2011 (Rome, Italy)

Unscripted - Robert Downey Jr & Guy Ritchie - Sherlock Holmes A Game of ...

Robert talks ‘Sherlock’ Fight Scenes & The Comment That Got Him Fit

Robert Downey Jr. may be a fighting machine as “Iron Man,” but he gets into it as a sleuth in “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.”
“On the first ‘Sherlock,’ we kind of introduced a little bit of a new take on Sherlock’s fighting style and it’s been fun to bring that to the next level,” he told Access Hollywood over the weekend, of the martial arts employed in the film, due in theaters on December 16.
“Also, Guy’s (Ritchie) directing style. I think what’s not boring about it to me is that there’s new camera techniques and there’s a lot of thought behind it,” he added. “It’s not just a bunch of fight moves, you know.”
The actor stays in shape for roles like Sherlock and Iron Man, and he confirmed that after “Tropic Thunder,” his wife – “Sherlock” producer Susan Downey — helped inspire him to get fit.
“She told me I had turned into a bit of a slob,” he revealed. “I blame it on Bubba’s Burgers. Probably one of the great burger establishments known to mankind.”
While a weight comment can be tough for some to hear, Robert thought it over and decided he agreed with Susan.
“As usual, I looked at her like, ‘All right, she’s got some warped perception of what’s going on here,’ and then when I realized that I couldn’t fit into any of my clothes, I honestly thought maybe because I’d been in a different climate — that they’d all shrunk, and then eventually I came around.”

Original post:

Robert Downey Jr reveal the sex of the baby (video)

Robert Downey Jr. talks about his unborn baby

FTRC Episode 33 Shelock Holmes 2 Premiere

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows promotional stills (part 1)


Various photos

ET behind the scene photo!

Interview with Daily Mail (December 3, 2011)

Megastar paydays, two movie franchises and a comeback worthy of Sherlock Holmes. Which begs the question... What's the Downside? 'Sherlock 2 starts off good, gets better and has the best act three of any movie I've ever done. It's like the best sex of your life - if, that is, the best sex of your life took two years from start to finish,' said Robert Downey Jr
Team Downey – yes, that really is the name – is based in an ultra-modern $6 million three-storey building in the terminally hip, bohemian Venice district of Los Angeles.

It exists purely to maintain Robert Downey Jr’s thriving public image as the most irresistible brand on the block – actor, writer, producer, potential director.

One entire wall on the ground floor is given over to pop-art portraits of every single employee, but by far the largest is that of Downey and his wife. The emphasis might be on the team aesthetic, but there’s no ambiguity about who’s ultimately in charge. Ascend to the upper floors and you find a large kitchen, three ridiculously plush bedrooms, a projection room and a terrace with barbecue and swimming pool.
'No nation on Earth can touch the English for eccentricity,' said Downey Jr
On the expansive top floor, Downey greets me with a big movie-star smile. With a regal curtsy and a self-mocking grin, he goes off in search of coffee for us both.
He’s surprisingly slim and, at 46, the only hints of middle age are a few creases around the eyes and flecks of grey in his goatee. His boyish enthusiasm remains undimmed. Having returned, he grabs a handful of vitamin bottles and a box of nicotine gum.

‘I’m off the smokes again,’ he explains.
I offer him my own brand, and his eyes light up with childlike delight.

‘I can have these? Man, these are the British gums. The originals. These represent a solid day’s worth of guarantee that I won’t launch myself like a heat-seeking missile on an unsuspecting public. Now I’m ready to party!’
When I last met him in 2007, Downey was moaning he was the only actor in Hollywood earning the same as when he started out.

Following his critically acclaimed performance in 1987’s Less Than Zero, it soon became obvious that he was as troubled as he was gifted. Between 1996 and 2001, he became the poster boy for self-destruction, being repeatedly arrested on drug-related charges and finally spending a year in jail at the turn of the century.
By the time he cleaned up for good in July 2003, he was only able to return to work – on the big-screen version of Dennis Potter’s The Singing Detective – after close friend Mel Gibson paid the insurance bond. Subsequent movies had little box-office impact.
Then, in 2006, he landed the lead role in the comic-book adaptation Iron Man, which grossed over half a billion dollars on its release two years later.

His next movie, Tropic Thunder, won him an Oscar nomination. The first Sherlock Holmes film made half a billion, as did 2010’s Iron Man 2. What changed?
Downey Jr on the set of Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows with director Guy Ritchie and Jared Harris (Moriarty)
‘Two words. Richard Attenborough. In ’91, I came to London to film Chaplin with him. What he taught me was life-changing. I was 26 and knew a lot less than I thought I did. But I was willing to learn.

'Attenborough helped me to see that if I wanted to act on any meaningful level, I needed to immerse myself in what was happening with British acting in the Sixties. He made me aware that all those great actors – Burton, O’Toole, Finney, Courtenay – figured out the whole thing and mastered it. He taught me about economy of effort and efficiency, even when I was out partying all night and burning the candle at both ends. It’s the raw emotion of the British model that’s most informed my own approach to acting.
Ritchie with Jude Law (Watson). The first Sherlock Holmes film made half a billion dollars
‘On a more personal level, Attenborough told me that one day my ambition would supersede all my other impulses and set me straight. At that time I foolishly thought my ambition had been realised.

'The fact that I was acting in movies, I couldn’t see beyond that. Attenborough saw a bigger picture. How do you remain a fast bowler for more than one season and also retain the use of your arms when you retire? How do you sustain that? That’s how Attenborough measured success. It took a long time for me to understand that properly.
‘With Iron Man, I had to take on board all that Richard Attenborough taught me about ambition all those years ago. I realised I needed a plan. I looked at Keanu Reeves in The Matrix, Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man and Johnny Depp in Pirates and thought, “I could do that kind of film.”

'I then had to seize the day when it came. I fought harder for Iron Man than I’ve fought for any other movie. I prepared for the screen test so feverishly that I made it impossible for anybody to do a better job.’
It was a random phone conversation in 2008 with director Guy Ritchie that led to Downey being cast as a swashbuckling Sherlock Holmes for the 21st century, but Downey’s fascination with the character’s creator took root far earlier.
During filming in London in 1989, he regularly visited Conan Doyle Hall in Belgravia to observe seances. The hall was part of a large 175-year-old mansion that housed the Spiritualist Association of Great Britain, which for decades has invited members and non-members to witness the tilting of tables and levitation of wardrobes, aided by presences from beyond the grave. Its centrepiece was a large medium’s cabinet containing the chair on which Conan Doyle wrote many of his Sherlock Holmes stories.

Holmes, Watson, the Gypsy fortune teller Sim (Noomi Rapace) and her friend (Affif Ben Badra) in a scene from the film. 'To improve on the first Sherlock was one reason for doing a second film,' said Downey Jr
‘I spent a lot of my spare time there,’ says Downey.
‘I’d go there mainly to sit in on the seances they conducted, where people would try to contact loved ones who’d passed away. It was fascinating. I went back recently to their new location near Victoria, because some of the plot of the new movie centres on fortune telling and mediums. If I’ve learnt anything, it’s that it’s possible to detect the presence of a deceased person in the room simply by the way the curtains move.’
Downey is completely serious; like Conan Doyle himself, he has a long-standing fascination with spiritualism and psychic phenomena – coexisting, in his case, with a dedication to yoga and wing chun kung fu.
‘I’m not at all sceptical about clairvoyance,’ he says. ‘I’ve always been drawn to that stuff. Knowing that Conan Doyle shared my interests helped me make my mind up about taking on the role of Sherlock.’
'I'm the 76th actor to do Sherlock, so there was a lot to live up to. Not since Chaplin had I done something where I felt the character was so iconic in the collective unconscious,' said Downey Jr
It’s a decision he clearly doesn’t regret, as 2009’s Sherlock Holmes confirmed Downey’s status as one of Hollywood’s hottest stars.

Last year alone he made an estimated $31.5 million, including a $15 million fee for starring in the second instalment of the franchise. But Downey makes a shocking confession to Holmes fans.
‘Act three of Sherlock 1 was serviceable, but not really very good. With this new movie, we agreed it needed to be a big improvement. Sherlock 2 starts off good, gets better and has the best act three of any movie I’ve ever done. It’s like the best sex of your life – if, that is, the best sex of your life took two years from start to finish.’
He says he was daunted to be taking on the most frequently portrayed character in cinema history.

Holmes, Watson and Watson's bride Mary (Kelly Reilly)
‘I’m the 76th actor to do Sherlock, so there was a lot to live up to. Not since Chaplin had I done something where I felt the character was so iconic in the collective unconscious. To improve on the first Sherlock was one reason for doing a second film. Another reason was that I got the chance to film in England again.
‘When I got the part, I voraciously made my way through the Conan Doyle books and was taken with his charming attention to detail. Watson remarks that Holmes keeps his tobacco in the toe of a Persian slipper.

Stephen Fry as Holmes's older brother Mycroft
'The interesting thing about that line is that it’s a judgement, a source of wonder, and it also explains so much about the character of Sherlock. It’s a wonderfully eccentric observation. No nation on Earth can touch the English for eccentricity, though the Irish come close.
‘I’m one-eighth English. And it’s an important eighth. My dad is half-Irish and I saw that eccentricity in him from an early age. For instance, he would stir his tea with an upside-down hammer. He would also claim to understand what the family terrier was saying when it barked.

'Now, there’s two ways of looking at that behaviour. Maybe he preferred a hammer to a spoon. They’re both made of wood, right? Maybe, just maybe, he could actually understand the language of dogs. Another way of looking at it is to say he was a wantonly eccentric kind of fellow.’
The influence of British culture on Downey isn’t just restricted to his acting; it has affected his entire life. With an underground-film-maker for a father and an actress mother, he travelled constantly in his early years, first visiting Britain at the age of six.
‘My dad was working on a movie in London, so we sailed over from New York on the SS France ocean liner. I attended Perry House, a prep school in Chelsea. I was there to study classical ballet, but most of my time was spent being a complete moron, when I should have been working on my pirouettes.

'I also spent way too much time focused on Monica, the most beautiful English girl you could possibly imagine. Coming from Greenwich Village in New York, London was like another planet. The weather was grey, but everything else was in technicolour. I was completely charmed by it all. I found it all so civilised. Hell, even the sewer rats were polite.
'It doesn't get any cooler than hanging out in The Punch Bowl with Jude Law (far left) and Stephen Fry and Guy Ritchie (centre), trying to keep up with the quick-fire English banter,' said Downey Jr
‘From then on, I was hooked on British culture. It started with the music. At six my dad introduced me to the Rolling Stones’ Let It Bleed album. It meant much more to me than Sesame Street. I played it endlessly. Elvis Costello’s Imperial Bedroom is my favourite album of all time.
'When it comes to music, the Brits beat the Americans hands down. There’s no contest. But it’s not just music. I’m fascinated with British history, from watching the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace to the English countryside, the architecture, the street art.
'I’ve always adored British comedy, from Python to Billy Connolly to Blackadder, and I’m especially drawn to the cutting edge. It doesn’t get any cooler than hanging out in The Punch Bowl with Jude Law and Stephen Fry and Guy Ritchie, trying to keep up with the quick-fire English banter.

'I love Frankie Boyle’s work, but everything he says seems to be an instant controversy. Why should he compromise the simple truth that humour is about what’s funny, not about what’s morally right and wrong? I just hope that British comedy doesn’t lose its nerve.’
It was a random phone conversation in 2008 with Ritchie that led to Downey Jr being cast as a swashbuckling Sherlock Holmes for the 21st century
It seems appropriate to solicit Downey’s thoughts on Ricky Gervais, whose edgy presentation of this year’s Golden Globes he appeared to denounce in a speech on the night. A genuine spat or good-natured verbal jousting?
‘For me, anything that’s happening in public is going to have a level of gamesmanship to it. If someone really offended me, I wouldn’t say anything about it publicly. I’d wait for a quiet moment and have it out to their face. Or, more likely, I’d shrug and ask myself why I should care.
‘The media are always looking for a spat, and I have to say that I love it, even when it’s about me. I love tabloid reality, for the reason that everything is true in the moment that you read it. It doesn’t occur to me when I’m reading it that it might just be made-up garbage.

'Life is good,' said Downey Jr (pictured above with wife Susan at the Oscars)
'I’ll take that kind of thing any day over sycophantic, over-respectful journalism where everyone is a member of the same club and all the uncomfortably sharp edges are smoothed over to save face. Which is just as bad as lying.

'The truth is that I like Ricky Gervais and I’ve seen him around. I’ve just heard that he’s been invited back to host the Golden Globes in 2012. So, he wins. End of story.’
Downey is happily married to Susan, an influential Hollywood player who was a producer on several of his recent movies.

Aside from the Team Downey building, they own a sumptuous home in LA, along with a $14 million estate in the foothills of Malibu. He has an 18-year-old son, Indio, from his previous marriage to actress/singer Deborah Falconer, and he and Susan are expecting their first child together in February.
‘It’s funny,’ he says. ‘I used to say that I’d welcome a bullet to the forehead if I ever ended up as a 40-something, remarried, marketable, big-action movie dad living in a cosy cul-de-sac in suburban LA. Now I am that guy.

'It just goes to show that I usually don’t know what’s good for me in life. But I’m getting better at knowing that stuff. I don’t need to rub against the grain nearly as much as I used to. I’m 46 now, so the countdown to my half-century has begun. I’d have to be completely deranged not to stress about that.’
It seems turning 50 is the only downside that Downey can conjure.

‘Life is good,’ he says. ‘With a new baby on the way, maybe I ought to think about slowing down a little. But I can’t see that happening in the short term.’
And with that, the activity in the building becomes noticeably more hectic, as Guy Ritchie bounds up the stairs and announces his arrival to discuss Sherlock 3. Downey needs to get back to work. With laser-like sincerity he thanks me for coming so far to see him.

Heading into his office to greet Ritchie, chewing rapaciously on his gum, he turns and says, ‘Give my love to England. I do mean that.’

‘Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows’ is released on December 16

Team Downey Premiere 'Sherlock' in LA

Robert Downey Jr. attends Los Angeles 2011 Britannia Awards

Downey Had His 'Heart Set on' Scenes in Drag

Saturday, November 26, 2011

EXCLUSIVE! (Or just a rumor?)

I heard that Justin Bieber could be on Iron Man 3. Now I'm not a Justin Bieber hater, but neither a lover. So I just want to spread the word that if he's really going to be on the upcoming movie, many people won't watch it when it'll be released on 2013.
I ask all of you to comment and vote on the poll about your thoughts on this news/rumor.
Thank you very much!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

On the set of Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows

Original post: SuperHeroHype

Guy Ritchie shoots like he's running a triathlon.
He and his crew jump from set-up to set-up with a fierce determinacy that has them in small made-up hotel restaurant one minute and, just hours later, directing a hundred outdoor extras (all in period costumes and some riding in horsedrawn carriages) on how to react to a tremendous explosion that will be added in post-production.
Welcome to the UK set of Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (which, when we visited the this past January, was still without an announced title), Ritchie's follow-up to his 2009 hit, reuniting Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Holmes and the famous detective's faithful assistant, Dr. Watson. This time around, they're joined by Noomi Rapace as a gypsy, Simza, and Jared Harris as literature's definitive criminal genius, Dr. Moriarty.
Again pulling in elements of various classic Doyle stories (including significant elements of one of the most popular, "The Final Problem"), "Game of Shadows" sets out to prove that you really can go "Holmes" again.
"We enjoyed the last one so much it would seem churlish not to return and do another one," Ritchie says as the set is prepared for a chilly outdoor shot, "...[We're] trying to make a better film than we did last time. I'd like to be more eloquent than that, but that's essentially our goal. We found the identity of the relationship in the last one and we'd like to big that up, so to speak. We'd like to try to improve the action a bit, and their relationship a bit, and the significance of the plot."
A two-hour drive from London, the expansive Waddeson Manor country house is serving as seven different locations for the film. Built in 1874 and currently owned by England's National Trust, the Manor offers a neo-Renaissance style that lends itself to the day's location: the Parisian Hotel de Triomphe where Holmes and Watson find themselves on the trail of the villainous Moriarty.
Because of the antiquity of the building (which is also home to a vast collection of art and centuries-old bottles of wine), visitors are forbidden from even bringing pens inside certain rooms and the film crew has gone through the laborious process of setting up special lighting designed so as not to damage the location's priceless hanging tapestries.
Set up as a hotel breakfast, the scene's center stage feature Harris, as his meal is interrupted by another man, delivering to Moriarty news that appears to be of some urgency. The men leave together and we learn that their conversation was being overheard by a seemingly older man with round glasses and an enormous grey beard who, up until they leave the room, pretends to simply be enjoying his tea and morning paper. When Moriarty is out of range, however, he leaps into action and out the front door, tugging at his facial hair, he reveals himself as Holmes in disguise. He tosses the beard to a passing waiter and is out the door, following his nemesis to thwart whatever evil he has planned.
Holmes' interest in Moriarty spins directly from the end of the first film, which (though Moriarty remained unseen) revealed that mastermind had been pulling the strings the entire time. "Game of Shadows" picks up shortly after that.
"Not a lot of time has elapsed," explains Law. "I am nearly married. I'm a couple of days away from getting married. I've moved out and I'm getting very comfortable with Mary."
Not surprisingly, that relationship doesn't exactly move forward smoothly, though this time it's not going to be Watson's gambling that has Mary upset.
"That's the least of her problems," Downey coyly smiles.
Susan Downey, producer and wife of the star, points out that Holmes himself will take a fair share of the blame regarding his friends' weddings troubles.
"[Holmes] has been obsessed since the first movie with the scent of Moriarty and believing that he's on to something much bigger," she continues, "This movie is essentially following him, figuring that out. But there are smaller mysteries along the way that are adding up to a bigger thing that's happening."
Introduced in voice only at the end of the first film, Moriarty's casting was for some time the subject of much speculation. Online rumors had, even before the release of the 2009 film, suggested various talents that had secretly done the voice.
"It was one of the crew guys," Mrs. Downey explains, "That was it. There's no great mystery to that. We decided that we wanted more a texture of voice than to worry about it being a person and having to worry about whether or not we were even going to be able to do a second movie... but we loved watching the rumors fly... Robert was even trying to start one that he was going to be Moriarty, also. But that never caught on."
Harris, best known for his work on "Mad Men," was a surprise choice for the role, but both Susan Downey and producer Lionel Wigram felt that a bigger name might ruin the part's mystique.
"Given how little he appears in the books, he's such a famous character," says Harris of the role. "He's such a famous villain and he really was the very first literary super-villain. From there, super-villains have become this thing where they are so pastiched that you want to do something that honors that title without it being you stroking a cat."
First appearing in the 1893 story "The Final Problem," Moriarty also plays a significant role in "The Valley of Fear," published two decades later, but taking place prior to that adventure. From those two main stories, Moriarty's back history had to be reverse-engineered.
"We batted around a lot of different ideas about who this guy was and where he came from," says Harris, "One of the things that we found is [not to] make very obvious choices, like he being Irish. 'Moriarty is an Irish name, so he's Irish. So he's secretly motivated by a desire to destroy the British empire because he's --' All of those things end up becoming boring because you've seen them all before and because as soon as you know what someone wants or what someone is trying to do, they lose their power."
"[Jared] asked all of the right questions that really put us to task, too," says Robert Downey Jr. "He's built a sort of reputation for himself and it would be a shame to expose him to a vast audience in not the best possible light. So he really put it to us about how 'Hey, let's not make this mistake. I think we can be better than this.' We were like, 'Absolutely. That is how we feel.' He basically lead the charge in this particular incarnation of Moriarty. It's even better than what we hoped it would've been."
Though he remains mum on any specific details, Harris says that his Moriarty will drive the plot forward in a manner that should have audiences guessing right up until the end.
"The whole story is a plan or plot that he has set in motion quite a long time before the story starts," Harris explains, "There's a tremendous sense of motion to the story and Sherlock Holmes is arriving in the end stages of this plan and he's catching up to it to thwart it."
Harris, like the entire cast, embraced the production's encouragement for improvisation, though had to walk a fine line in making Moriarty neither funny nor over-the-top evil.
"One of the things that I was interested in about Moriarty was how he's so manipulative that he doesn't need to commit violence himself or kill people," Harris continues. "He can get everyone to do what he needs to do and sometimes they don't even know that they are being manipulated by him. They aren't even aware that they are caught in a stratagem that he has... That's quite chilling, to have someone that understands people that well. He can have a letter arrive on the wrong day and it's going to be enough that it will set somebody off or whatever it is."
As mysterious as Moriarty is, however, Rapace's Simza may have him beat. She's shrouded in secrecy and doesn't seem to appear in any of Doyle's original writings. On set, Rapace wasn't even willing to give up her character's name, simply saying that she's a Romani gypsy who first meets Holmes in London and again later in France.
"It's kind of being the new girl in the class or something," she says of playing the part, "But you can feel that the whole team has something really good, so it's like stepping into something where somebody else has done the hard work so you can just fly."
Joking that Ritchie loves gypsies (he previously featured Brad Pitt as one in 2000's Snatch), Rapace did her fair share of preparation for the part.
"Her character was not fully fleshed out when we brought her on board," says Susan Downey, "She was already a gypsy and we knew the way, from a pure plot standpoint, how she was going to weave in and out of their story, but once we got Noomi, we decided to build towards her strengths. She really helped develop the character to the point where, ultimately, you're going to see her."
"I've done a lot of research on gypsies and their culture," Rapace adds, "So, for example, I've added in that I actually talk some Romani, their language. So we've added in some lines based on how they actually talk. They will probably need to do subtitles in some scenes. I'm learning to do some dances and stuff like that."
However it is that Simza comes to be traveling in the company of Holmes and Watson, she's featured in the day's big outdoor shoot. The trio is seen walking through the streets of Paris when an explosion rings out from within the Hotel de Triomphe. While the crowd runs in the opposite direction, the three leads run towards the disaster, shocked at what has just taken place. Simza, it seems, is no stranger to action.
"I think it's really important to find a way to do things as realistically and credible as possible," Rapace explains, "She's not a fighter. She's a street fighter, so she can use a fork or a knife or she can bite somebody or throw a stone. I think she's a survivor and she's used to being one. I think most gypsies all over the world are used to being not very welcome and always on the run, expecting people to not like them and being critical. I think she is used to taking care of herself and fighting back. We have many explosive situations."
Rapace also adds that the phrase she's most commonly hearing about Simza is that she fits in as "one of the guys."
"Is that bad?" she laughs. "I think she's quite tough. She's a strong woman."
Though unfortunately not on set that day, Stephen Fry is also set to make an appearance in "Game of Shadows" and it's one that should have Doyle fans very pleased. He plays Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock's older brother.
"Stephen was the only choice," says Susan Downey. "It was Mycroft... Stephen Fry. And, fortunately, he wanted to do it. He was just so perfect. The description of Mycroft being his brother who is potentially even smart than he is but far lazier."
"His character is arguably the most enigmatic of all the characters in the lexicon, and so what better person?" adds Robert Downey Jr. "It's so funny, too, that he's literally just hitting this super stride. Just as we are got here, we went to go see him at Albert Hall and then he is at a rehearsal with us just basically thinking and phrasing circles around us. We were just kind of left wondering what happened when he left. He had to go because he has some other hip thing that he has to do."
Fry lent his talent to a film adaptation of British literature last year with Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland as the voice of the Cheshire Cat and is set to do so again next year as the master of Laketown in Peter Jackson's The Hobbit. A Doyle fan for life, Fry was, as a boy, the youngest-ever member of the long-running "Sherlock Holmes Society."
As for what Doyle's own thoughts might be on their adaptation, the stars have a few ideas.
"Well, I'm sure he might have had a complaint or two," Robert Downey Jr. admits. "I can't speak for the strength of transcripts of stage productions, but we've definitely put the most of his words in our mouths. If anything, he might be happy that we brought Watson back to how he was originally described. There is something about it. Last time around, there was, for some reason or other, that wave of bromance in the air. I think this time we are attempting to transcend that a little bit by making these two guys go up against something that is bigger than both of them."
"I think when you've got source material, whether it's a play or a book, a great writer often appreciates being adapted and developed," adds Law, "It's like when you go see a production of a great play and they are always different. There is always room for interpretation, and this is our interpretation. I don't think we drifted as far away from the source material as people expected, but I equally think that we were original enough to keep it fresh and our own. So I think he would have been very appreciative."
Fans of the original books should find it somewhat ominous that scheduling included a scene shot in the Swiss Alps, but the hope is not to end the franchise with "Game of Shadows" and, if all goes according to plan, finish out a trilogy of Sherlock Holmes films.
"I always had an idea, when we started this, of more or less where the first three movies should take place and what I wanted to see," says Wigram, "A general direction for them. We've sort of followed that on the second one, though it was just a tiny concept and, collectively, we've come up with a much stronger story for it... If we're lucky enough to make a third, we'll probably go there. But beyond that, we don't have very specific plans."
Robert Downey Jr., meanwhile, admits that the reception from the first film was overwhelming and he can only help that the sequel's response will follow suite.
"Half of my problem - if I do have a problem that I can speak about half of – I would say is that every time I swing I think it's going out of the park, he says. "I still try to keep that attitude, but I knew that we had a real winning combination. I knew that something clicked with us... It's a tough thing - how do you recreate having caught lightning in a bottle? I'm not used to it. Well, maybe I am a little bit more lately than before. But I'm still not used to studios being ecstatic about what we did and saying, 'Please go do that again!'"

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows opens in theaters on December 16th.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

'Sherlock Holmes' Set Visit: 'Game Of Shadows' Is 'Bigger And Better' - US ONLY

Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law On Set Interview SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS

Original Source: COLLIDER

Here’s a few of the highlights from the interview:
  • They were both excited to come back because they had such a good time working on the first film.
  • On the first film, they had come up with a lot of ideas that couldn’t fit into the movie, but they were able to use some of those when it came time to make the sequel.
  • The tone is a bit darker.
  • A Game of Shadows is closer to one of Doyle’s books (The Final Problem) than the first film was, but it also hints at other works.
  • Noomi Rapace’s character becomes a kind of partner to Holmes and Watson. She’s emotionally involved in what the two are trying to work out, and they have a common goal.
  • They wanted the characters to grow in the sequel. They wanted to use what worked from the first film, but didn’t want to just repeat what they did the last time.
  • They expand upon Watson’s gambling problems this time around.
  • They continued the unique filming process that they began on the first film, wherein they will get together with Ritchie, the producers, and whoever else is in the day’s scene, and dismantle it and talk about how they can improve the scene and improvise.
  • Law says Jared Harris has fantastic range and can terrify, amuse, entertain, and threaten all in a convincible manner.

Here’s the full on set interview.

Question: Everyone knows how much you loved playing Sherlock Holmes and how you wanted to do this.  Could you both talk about how happy both of you are to be back in character doing a sequel so soon?

Robert Downey Jr.: Well, ever since Mr. Law and I met, the chuckles, and the fun, and the happiness come.  But we are really quite about the business very much, I believe, as Holmes and Watson are.  So if it’s 99% perspiration.  Oh, you are going to love this – we like getting sweaty together.  I mean, we like working our asses off.  We like to work.

Jude Law: We like to work and we find fun in the work.

Downey Jr.: Yes, we do.

Law: I think also it’s a very happy….every so often you get to play wonderful characters maybe at the wrong time in your life.  Sometimes, you get to play terrible characters at a really great time in your life.   Sometimes, the right character comes along at the right time.  I think we both felt that happened.   So it wasn’t just happening individually.  It was also watching someone else have that experience. So, like Robert said, we are working hard, but we are also enjoying it tremendously.  It’s a perfect balance.

Downey Jr.: It’s so nice to have an opportunity to…to me, Sherlock being as successful as it was and being received as well as it was by people is probably the single greatest feeling I’ve ever had about something because you know?

Because you weren’t expecting it to be received so well?

Downey Jr.:  No.  Half of my problem – if I do have a problem that I can speak about half of – I would say is that every time I swing, I think it’s going out of the park.  I still try to keep that attitude, but I knew that we had a real winning combination.  I knew that just something clicked with us.   I never had someone say, “Oh my god. You have such great screen chemistry…with him!” [everybody laughs] It’s what made the movie work.  Everything else is kind of ancillary and tributary to that and then us triangulating and the synergy we found with Guy…it’s a tough thing. How do you recreate having caught lightning in a bottle?  I’m not used to…well, maybe a little more lately than before.  I’m not used to studios being ecstatic about we did and saying, “Please go do that again.”

Law: It was a relief too, right?  I remember on the first one, we were coming up with so many ideas or digging out little details from the books.  It was part of that process where we were riffing.  We would come up with stuff that we just knew couldn’t fit into the first one.  That carried on throughout the whole press tour.  We would go, “Wouldn’t it be great if…?”  So when it was a success and when we knew that it was pretty likely that the second one was going to happen – it was also like a relief.  It was like, “Oh! We can use all of that stuff!  Thank Goodness! Thank you!”  It felt like something that was going to be a home for all of this other creative outpouring that had already occurred.

Downey Jr.: Yeah, and reintroducing it to an audience…well, introducing it to certain audiences for the first time.   Their initial context of Sherlock Holmes was seeing Jude and I do this movie.  The nice thing this time around is that we are able to honor Doyle even more by pretty much making this a story.  A very thrilling story.  Not unlike one of the Conan Doyle stories that Watson is retelling.  So you get back to the subjectivity of “here is this normal person, an ordinary, if you would, person in these extraordinary circumstances with his friend”

Some time has elapsed since the first film.  So what is different for the two characters this time around?

Law:  Not a lot of time has elapsed.  I am nearly married.  I’m a couple of days away from getting married.  I’ve moved out and I’m living very comfortably with Mary.  I’m surprised she’s not here.

Downey Jr.: I arranged it.  As indicated by the end of the last film, Holmes is definitively obsessed with the first super-villain in literature, Moriarty, for whom we have the astonishingly fantastic Jared Harris.

Sequels tend to go darker.  That seems to be the new trend.  You’re almost very light.  Is the follow-up going to keep that?

Law: I don’t know about you, but I find it kind of hard.  I don’t know yet.  We all said, “It’s going to be darker this time.  It’s going to be really nasty and gritty.” I don’t know why there is that trend, but you’re right.  It does seem to be so.  We went in with that in mind.  Certainly the threat of Moriarty and the presence of such an evil mind certainly leads it that way, but we tend to have been coming up with more lighter stuff.  Don’t you think, the two of us?

Downey Jr.: Yeah.  I honestly think that it’s both a little tiny bit broader and it’s a little bit darker just because of the fellow and the situation we are up against.  He reaches out and touches us quite a bit, so to speak.  We are in pretty bad shape almost all of the time.

So no drugs then for Holmes?

Downey Jr.:  Oh, you mean like he had to sober up so that he could have a chance?


Downey Jr.:  No, of course not.  He’s high.  It’s not like Watson dried him out in a bath or something.  He still struggles.

You said that you went back to Doyle for this film.  With the introduction of Moriarty, would that suggest that this is a little bit more like “The Final Problem?”

Law:  It is a little more like “The Final Problem.”  But having said that, as with the other one, there are other hints at other books that are laced in.  There are also areas that are completely original.  But it’s closer to a book, meaning “The Final Problem,” than the first.

Downey Jr.:  Again, just to be clear, thematically, as opposed to last time, it was an origin story with these two guys.  You’re kind of meeting both of them and by the end he is saying, “What are those?”  and he goes, “Oh, just scribbles.”  This time, he is living and recanting a story to an audience after the fact…kind of.

So is it your narration?  Will you be narrating parts?

Downey Jr.:  I think so far it’s without narration.  Who knows how it’s going to wind up?  Christ, what am I editing it, too? [everybody laughs]

Law:  But tonally it’s interesting answering that question when you are in the middle of making it, because you are only aware of what you want it to be like and what the energy wants it to be like.  Then, you are also aware of what you shot.  So it’s quite hard.  What is clear is there are huge scenes.  There is much more a sense of…there is us fleeing, this time. There’s us hunting down, there are a lot more riddles.  I don’t know whether you know this, but a lot of it is not in London.  We’re fleeing London.  There is a real sense, in a way, of living out of a bag, hence I’m wearing my tweeds at the moment. 

Downey Jr.: That’s right.  They’re not as loose as I thought they’d be. [everybody laughs]

Are you being chased out of London?

Downey Jr.: No.

Law:  Chased out? No.

I’m interested in your relationship with Stephen Fry.  Do you have a brotherly contact with him?  What is your relationship like with him?

Law:  I don’t have any contact with him.  Seriously, we’re not allowed to touch him.  [everybody laughs]

Downey Jr.:  No one’s allowed to touch Mycroft.  Stephen, we’ve all had our way.  [everybody laughs] His character is arguably the most enigmatic of all the characters in the lexicon, and so what better person?  It’s so funny, too, that he’s literally just hitting this super stride.  Just as we are here we went to go see him at Albert Hall and then he is at a rehearsal with us just basically thinking and phrasing circles around us.  We were just kind of left wondering what happened when he left, but he has to go because he has some other hip thing that he has to do.

Law:  He was the youngest member of the Sherlock Holmes Appreciation Society when he was a boy.

Downey Jr.:  Baker Street Irregulars or the Appreciation Society?

Law:  Yeah, The Irregulars.

Downey Jr.: The Irregulars?
Law:  You’re right.  There is a difference.  I don’t know.  He was the youngest in one of them.

Downey Jr.:  I guarantee you he knows. [everybody laughs]

What about your character’s relationship with Noomi [Rapace’s] character?

Law:  Where does she come in?


Law:  She comes on board because she is a link early on that Holmes picks up on.

Downey Jr.: She’s a lead, exactly.

Law:  She then becomes a kind of partner because she is incredibly handy in different ways, I won’t let too much go.  She is also emotionally involved.  By the time we meet her on her home turf, she is emotionally involved in what we are trying to work out.   So she kind of comes along for the whole journey.

Downey Jr.:  We have a common goal.

What are you most careful about when you play the same character in a franchise like this?

Law:  You just want it to grow.

Downey Jr.:  Yeah.

Law:  You are aware that you don’t want to repeat stuff, but you want to use what has worked.  But you don’t want to be accused of just going over the old thing, you know?  You want it to start growing a little bit more.

Downey Jr.: Yeah.

What do you think Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would have thought of Sherlock and Watson?

Downey Jr.:  Well, I’m sure he might have had a complaint or two.  I can’t speak to the strength of transcripts of stage productions, but we’ve definitely put the most of his words in our mouths.  If anything, he might be happy that we brought Watson back to how he was originally described.  There is something about it.  Last time around, there was, for some reason or other, that wave of “bromance” in the air.  I think this time we are attempting to transcend that a little bit by making these two guys go up against something that is bigger than both of them.
If I have learned anything it is that comparison is a dangerous place to go because nothing is ever like anything else.  So I always think that a sequel you assume is a logical continuation of something that you already understand, but I don’t understand how we did it the first time.  So going into comparison I would just confuse myself.

Law:  I think when you got source material, whether it’s a play or a book – a great writer often appreciates being adapted and developed.  It’s like when you go see a production of a great play and they are always different.  There is always room for interpretation, and this is our interpretation.  I don’t think we drifted as far away from the source material as people expected, but equally I think that we were original enough to keep it fresh and our own.  So I think he would have been very appreciative. 

In the first movie there are a few allusions to Watson’s gambling problems, but we don’t really see too much about it.  Do you guys expand upon it this time around?

Law:  Oh, yeah.

Downey Jr.:   I promise.

Law:  We tackle that in the first ten minutes I think.

Downey Jr.:  It’s a problem.  I don’t think we went far enough.  I would like to see you not be able to afford the wedding or anything.  Oh, well.  There is always next time.

Law:  Yeah, there is next time.  We do.  We tackle all of those kind of seedlings that were planted and looked at I think pretty much.

Are we to assume that Mary isn’t too thrilled about the gambling?

Downey Jr.:  That’s the least of her problems.

Law:  It’s true. [laughs]

When you make a great first film how careful are you? Are either of you superstitious about the way you rehearse when making the sequel and trying to recapture that magic?  Could you talk about the process of making the sequel versus the first film?

Law:  I always worried about that process.  When we started the first one we evolved this process.

Downey Jr.:  Yeah, we didn’t know what we were going to lock into.

Law:  And really that process didn’t find its left feet until we were about a month in; maybe a little bit later, maybe 6 weeks in.  By the end, we were just loving it.  I’m talking about how we would dismantle a scene, improvise it a little bit, and then go back to the source material and use Conan Doyle.  Then, we would have a scene that was great scene, but maybe nine pages long that has to be one page long.  It’s a long process and Guy is very heavily involved and any of the actors of the day are very involved.

Downey Jr.: And the producers and writers.  Last time, we finished basically in Baker Street and then a bunch of stuff on the bridge.  But we finished our journey by shooting the beginning of our journey.  This time, we began our journey at Baker Street.  I think some of it was really daunting, but it’s like we can kind of only do it one way.  We do it full steam ahead and we do it the entire time that we’re working.  We don’t have a lunch break and we work when we are eating.  My wife, our producer, Lionel [Wigram], and the other people in our little pit crew – none of us can help ourselves.  We’re always talking about something that is 3 weeks away or 3 minutes away.  It’s kind of like, in a way everybody is an honorary associate producer.

Law:  That process was weird.  I’m not superstitious, but it was that process that I was nervous about recreating.  I kind of thought, “Maybe that just worked on the first one.”  How do you step in and start that up again?  But like anything, you have to drop into it.  So starting on this one, we started a little earlier than day one.  We started writing a good few weeks before and it just happened.

Downey Jr.:  We already want to pitch you Sherlock 3 by the way.  That one is going to be fantastic!

Can you tell us about today’s scene?

Law:  I haven’t done anything yet.

Downey Jr.:  But he still had something to say about it.  Today?  Honestly, I’m in the phase…we’re two weeks out and by the time I’m slapping wigs and mustaches on, running down hallways, and all of that, I call myself the “Man of a Thousand Crabby Faces.” [laughs] We still have a little bit of action to shoot.  Crazy.  Last time, we basically met, shot a scene or two, and then started kicking ass together for weeks.  In some way, I feel like I got to know you better doing that than anything else.  I would be shooting and they would have two cameras coming down two sides.  I would look over and I would be like, “He’s keeping up. He likes to scrap.”

What does Jared bring to the role of Moriarty? What should we expect from his performance?

Law:  Jared is a fantastically experienced and quality actor, which was the most important thing.  You wanted someone who could pull the job off.  What I got immediately when they mentioned his name is that this guy has got a fantastic range.  He can in equal proportions terrify and amuse, entertain and threaten.  You just need all of those on your palette if you are going to play this guy who is meant to be as brilliant and as evil and as mysterious as Moriarty is.

Downey:  Yeah, and he asked all of the right questions. He really put us to task, too.  He’s built a sort of reputation for himself and it would be a shame to expose him to a vast audience in not the best possible light.  So he really put it to us about how “Hey, let’s not make this mistake.  I think we can do better than this.”  We were like, “Absolutely.  That’s how we feel.” He basically lead the charge on this particular incarnation of Moriarty.  It’s even better than  we hoped it would’ve been.  I think people are going to be, not surprised, but I think a lot of people are going to really recognize him for who he is for maybe the first time in a big scenario like this.  We are proud, but we earned it for sure.  He also likes to work. 

You had a very successful first movie and I’m assuming this is going to be a very successful second movie.  How much are you guys dropping in Easter eggs and laying the foundation for what will hopefully be a third film?

Law:  I don’t understand the Easter egg term.

Downey Jr.:  Let me help you.  Like in the Marvel world, right?  We will have Captain America’s shield.  They will go, “Is that?” I’ll go, “Yeah.”  Then, I use it.  We do something silly with it.

Law:  I see.  It pops up, but not referred to, necessarily.

Downey Jr.:  Exactly. The fans call those “Easter eggs”.  I didn’t know what it was on Iron Man 2. I heard it twenty times. I was like, “Why are you talking about Easter eggs? It’s fucking July!”

Law: That’s cool, I like that. I get it.

Downey Jr.: We don’t have a one yet.

Law:  That’s another terminology I don’t understand.  What is a “one”?

Downey Jr.:  We don’t have any.

Law:  What do you mean?

Downey Jr.:  We don’t have a one Easter egg.

Law:  Sorry.  I’m catching up on these Easter egg references. [everybody laughs]

Downey Jr:  There are none that I am aware of yet, but we might do some additional photography.

Law:  I can’t think of any Easter eggs. 

You mentioned the term “bromance,” but I think the major success in the first film was the chemistry between you two guys.   How does it play in the second film?  Will you be downplaying it?

Law: Hell, no. [laughs]

Downey Jr.:  I don’t think when you see this, you’ll feel that we’ve restrained ourselves at all.  Truth be told, the bottom line with these stories, it’s about this one man’s observation of this other man who tells him that he is the only true friend he has and him realizing that he is the only person that he is actually very, very close to besides his wife.  I think that that’s just a great theme.  The bottom line is that we are in this love together.

Law:  The brother theme is really strong in this one actually.  That’s when Noomi gets involved, too.  There is a theme or a demand later on in this film where it questions one’s reliance on someone else and can you really trust someone?

Downey Jr.:  Is anybody ever really what they put themselves forth to be?  Including us, including our nemesis, including pretty much every character in this movie.  That’s what I think is so interesting.  It really is a lot about the shadow elements of everybody.  I just thought I would end on that dour note.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows opens December 16th.