"Sherlock Holmes has been portrayed on film more often -- and by more different people -- than any other fictional [sic] character." according to Leonard Maltin's Movie and Video Guide, nearly 200 according to "Instant Recall" (2 May, 1991).
Here's our listing of 140 (76 UK, 39 US, 25 Germ), based on Sherlock Holmes on the
Screen: The Motion Picture Adventures of the World's Most Popular Detective by Robert W. Pohl Jr. and Douglas C. Hart (A. S. Barnes, Brunswick, NJ., 1977);
Deerstalker:Holmes and Watson on Screen by Ron Haydock (Scarecrow Press, Metuchen, NJ, 1978) and The Films of Sherlock Holmes by Chris Steinbrunner and
Norman Michaels (Citadel Press, Seracuse, NY, 1978).
Please write if you have any additions or corrections.
1900: (US Mutoscope & Biograph Co.) "Sherlock Holmes Baffled"
1903: (US Vitagraph) "Adventures of Sherlock Holmes"
1906: (US) "Sherlock Holmes Returns"
1909: (US) "Sherlock Holmes in the Great Murder Mystery"
1910: (Ger) "The Old Secretary" (Der Alte Sekretar)
1911: (Ger) "Arsene Lupins' End" (Arsene Lupins Ende), (Ger)
"Sherlock Holmes Against ProfessorMoriarty" (Sherlock Holmes Contra Professor
1912: (UK) SB, (UK) Rs, (UK) Be, (UK) Ca, (UK)BV, (UK) "Stolen
Papers", (UK) sb;
1913: (UK) MR, (US) "Sherlock Holmes Solvesthe Sign of Four" (Fo); (Ger) "Telltale
Cigarette" (Verrater Zigarette), (Ger), "Black Cap" (Schwarze Kappe)
1914: (UK Samuelson Film Co.) Sc, (US) Sc, (Ger) "Sherlock Holmes Against Dr. Death", (Sherlock Holmes Contra Dr. Mors), (Ger), Ba (Der Hund von Baskerville), (Ger) "A Scream in the Night" (Ein Schrei in der Nacht), (US) "William Voss"
1916: (UK Samuelson Film Co.) Fe, (US) "Sherlock Holmes", (Ger) "Sherlock Holmes
on Vacation" (Sherlock Holmes auf Urlaub), (Ger) "Sherlock Holmes' Nocturnal Meeting" (Sherlock Holmes nachtliche Begegnung)
1917: (Ger) "The Erstrom Motor" (Der Erstrommotor), (Ger) "The Casket" (Die Kasette), (Ger) "The Serpent Ring" (Der Schlangenring)
1918: (Ger) "The Indian Spider" (Die Indische Spinne), (Ger), "Rotterdam-Amsterdam",
(Ger) "What He Saw in the Mirror" (Was er im Spiegel Sar), (Ger), "The Gift Seal" (Die
Giftplombe), (Ger) "The Fate of Renate Yongk" (Das Schicksal der Renate Yongk), (Ger) "The Cardinal's Box" (Die Dose des Kardinals)
1919: (Ger) "Three Days Dead" (Drei Tage Tot), (Ger) "The Murder in the Splendid Hotel)" (Der Mord im Splendid Hotel)
1920: (Germ) "Dr. MacDonald's Sanitorium", (Ger) "Harry Hill Against Sherlock Holmes" (Harry Hill Contra Sherlock Holmes), (Ger) "The House without Windows"
(Das Haus ohne Fenster)
1921: (UK) DD, (UK) DF, (UK) Id, (UK) YF, (UK) RL, (UK) RC, (UK) Bo, (UK) TL, (UK) Be, (UK) NB, (UK) CB, (UK) EH, (UK) "Tiger of San Pedro" (WL), (UK) PS, (UK) sc, (UK) Ba
1922: (UK) CA, (UK) AG, (UK) nb, (UK) RS, (UK), NT, (UK) SS, (UK) RC, (UK) SN, (UK) BP, (UK), bp, (UK) Sc, (UK) BV, (UK) MR, (UK) GP, (UK), GI, (US) "Sherlock
1923: (UK) SB, (UK) sb, (UK) GS, (UK) bc, (UK), ET, (UK) HL, (UK) cb, (UK) LF, (UK) TS, (UK), MT, UK) TB, (UK) "The Stone of Mazarin" (MS), (UK) DM, (UK) CM, (UK), FP, (UK) Fo
1924 (US) "Sherlock, Jr." (45m) projectionist becomes part of film's story
1929: (US) "The Return of Sherlock Holmes", (Ger) Ba
1931: (UK) "The Sleeping Cardinal", (UK) SB
1932: (UK) Ba, (UK) Fo, (UK) "The Missing Rembrandt", (US) "Sherlock Holmes"
against Moriarty in modern London
1933: (US) "The Radio Murder Mystery", (US) Sc (70m) very little to
do with namesake
1939: (US) Ba (80m); (US) "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" (Fox, 85m), based on 1899 play "Sherlock Holmes", Brandon threatened by letter from Albatros, strangled by bolo, clubfooted shoeprint leads to Chinchilla, Incan dirge like father 10 years before, Holmes sings at dinner party, beardless Moriarty disguised as bobby, steals 3-million-pound Star of Delhi, but Miss Bandon Ann and Hunter saved, Holmes' carriage tips, "Elementary, My dear Watson" Holmes as bookseller-spy in Switzerland, but as unable as Lestrade to prevent scientists being murdered for bombsight parts
1943: (US) "Sherlock Holmes in Washington" (71m) courier killed, FBI shown up in
recovery of missing microfilm, Watson discovers bubblegum; (US) "Sherlock Holmes
Faces Death" (68m) based on MR, at a mansion for retired officers Inspector Lestrad accuses butler, secretly married to housekeeper, Jeffrey and Philip Musgrave murdered, ritual hidden in stopped clock gives1539 crypt entrance via chess problem on tiled floor:
1. N-3 N-3
2. PxP PxP
dusty walls and swept floor, Holmes bluffs that Brumton left murderer's name written
1944: (US) "Sherlock Holmes and the Spiderwoman" (62m), victims of poisonous
spiders driven to suicide, Holmes fakes own death, then allows himself to be captured
and slowly drained of blood, but rescued by Watson; Spiderwoman caught in her own trap; (US) "The Scarlet Claw" (65m) gruesome murders in La Morte Rouge, Canada; (US) "The Pearl of Death" (69m) based on SN, search for six busts of Napoleon before the Creeper kills all the owners
1945: (US) "The House of Fear" (69m) murder and mutilation at remote coastal
clubhouse, based on FO; (US) "The Woman in Green" (68m) blackmail, hypnotism, murdered women with right forefingers missing, Holmes courts a woman and nearly suicides!; (US) "Pursuit to Algiers" (65m) princess and jewels threatened on ship at sea; (US) "Terror by Night" (60m) Star of Rhodesia diamond threatened by Col. Moran on London-Edinburgh train; (US) "Dressed to Kill" (72m) music boxes made in prison hold clue to stolen bank plates (as in tg): "SHELF THIRD UPDRS", poisoned tobacco,
fake fire (as in Bo) 1951: (UK) TL
1959: (UK) Ba (84m, Peter Cushing)
1962: (Ger) "Sherlock Holmes and the Hullbath of Death" (Sherlock Holmes und das Hulsband des Todes)
1965: (UK) "A Study in Terror" (94m) Jack the Ripper murdern, (US) "The Double-barreled Detective Story"
1970: (UK) "The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes" (125m) in lull Holmes accepts
invitation to Russian ballet, counters offer of Strativarius for siring a baby with
homosexuality rumor, amnesiac Belgian wife identified via number of luggage tag on hand, Emil Valedeau missing, canaries at vacant build address, no footprints because of wheelchair
1972: (UK) "The Case of the Metal-sheathed Elements", (US) "They Might Be Giants" (98m) lady doctor Watson discovers patient who thinks he's Sherlock Holmes, Ba (73m, Stewart Granger)
1974: (UK) "Murder in Northumberland"
1975: (UK) "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother", Sigerson jealous of his brother whom he calls "Sheer Luck", saves him from compulsive liar Jenny Hill (also music hall singer and tutor to Lord Redcliff's sons) being blackmailed by Eduardo Gambetti, saves Sherlock from Jenny and document from Moriarty with some help from
Sherlock, Watson, Sgt. Orville Sacker, Apr. 13, 1891; (US) "Sherlock Holmes"
1976: (US) "Sherlock Holmes in New York" (100m) Moriarty threatens world's gold
and Irene Adler; (US) "Murder by Death" (94m) along with Charlie Chan, Miss Marple, Sam Spade, etal.; (US) "Return of the World's Greatest Detective" (78m) psychiatric
social worker, Dr. Watson, aids bumbling motorcycle cop who thinks he's Sherlock
1977: (UK) "The 7% Solution", spoof (84m, Peter Cook)
1978: (UK) "The Case of the Mounting Fortune", (US) Ba
1979: (Can, UK) "Murder by Decree" (121m) Jack the Ripper murderers; "The Case of the Fantastical Passbook"
1983 (UK) Ba (101m, Ian Richardson)
1984 (UK) "Sherlock Holmes and the Masks of Death" (75m) murders in London and kidnapping of German prince in 1913
1987 (US) (100m) Dr. Watson's great granddaughter, a private detective from
Boston discovers Holmes in suspended animation for 90 years
1988 (US) "Holmes and Me" Holmes played too well by actor hired by Watson's character (during hiatus?)
1990: (UK, Ital, Fren, Belg, Lux, 200m) "Sherlock Holmes and the Leading Lady"
return of Irene Adler, meeting with Sigmund Freud
1991: (US) "Incident at Victoria Falls" sequel to "Sherlock Holmes and the Leading Lady" Star of Africa stolen, murder victim leaves backward "SJH", Holmes plays with Inspector, mystery man agrees to lies, "Stanley Boolard" (A. J. Raffles)
attempts to steal what he thinks is real diamond as he was told by Lady, Holmes
questions Raffles in jail in disguise -- grandfather of Olah Dulup gone four days,
unused ticket -- left 5 minutes before! other suspects killed near Victoria Falls,
"Marconi" didn't try to save Holmes from attack, Teddy Roosevelt got scandalous behavior on camera when Watson let it fall.
As you can see there's been nine versions just of the "Hound of the Baskervilles", five UK, two each US and German.
100 YEARS AGO
Mar Tregennis murders
Apr Dr. Stephen H. Emmens, discoverer of argentaurum disappeared, May Rue Jean Goujon, Paris, bazaar fire kills 200
also in 1887
Dracula by Bram Stoker
Travels in West Africa by M. H. Kingsley
Der Kilimandscharo by G. Volkens
Dr. Leon Sterndale makes last expedition to Ubangiland (DF)
Dr. Arthur Conan Doyle meets Jean Leckie
Perusing The Baker Street Journal we find Madeleine B. Stern (3:3:133-55, July '53)
listed the books Holmes would probably have had to study Cornish philology as he did:
Ancient Cornish Drama by Edward Norris (Penzance, '59),
Dialect of Cornwall by Jago (Truro, '82),
Glossary of Cornish Names by Bannister (Truro, '71),
Glossary of Words in Use in Cornwall by Courtney and Couch (Penzance,
Lexicon Cornu-Britannicum by Williams (Landover, '65),
maybe even Archeologica Britannica by Lhuyd (1707).
"With these works at hand, Holmes not only could pride himself upon an extremely
interesting group of Cornish imprits," she writes "But could work with diligence upon the
monolith inscriptions, the Cymric division of Celtic, and the Brythonic dialect that
engrossed his attention."
She also laments "had it not been for the intervention of the Tregennis family, it is
clear enough that Holmes would have produced one of the most remarkable
treatises on comparative philology, a treatise linking the fragments of Gnostic
hymns with ancient Cornish inscriptions."
In "Tregennis and Poe" (1:1:90-1, Jan '46) Stephen Saxe suggests a connection
between Sterndale and Poe's "The Imp of the Perverse" in which a similar poison which
works by combustion
In "The Poisons in the Canon" (Leaves from the Copper Breeches, p. 91-6) Dr. George B. Koelle likens devilsfoot to LSD; in "Devilish Drugs" (Sherlock Holmes Journal 3:3:12-4, Autumn '57) F. A.Allen compares it rauwolfia.
On natural hallucinogens The Writer's Complete Crime Reference Book and my own
Acid (D-Lysergic Acid Diethylamide) from ergot,
henbane, the fumes of which are said to have given witches the notion they were flying; MDA (methylenedioxyamphetamine) age regression;
Mesc (mescaline) from Peyote cactus buttons animate inanimate; and
Shroom (Psilocybin) from Psilocybe mushroom,
insect; Similla Maui-wowie (a tetrahydrocannabinol) from plant leaf, smoked or eaten;.
Watson's "Tredannick Wollas" has been associated with Tredannick Wartha, W. Penwith and Predannack Wollas all near Podhu Bay, Land's End, near Lyonesse. The
men-an-tol there are said the have invigorating properties.
The dating of the Tregennis murder investigation is given as "the spring of the year 1897" (DF 3A) yet also March. This is explained by spring weather having come early that year, hence Holmes' surprise at the need for a fire and the garden being "already
well-filled with spring flowers". The adventure probably lasted from the 17th to the 20th, since Holmes' final experiment took place "one afternoon" after "the next two days" after the 17th.
Was it the news of the death of Dr. Sterndale in 1910 that prompted Holmes' telegram? Is there a anagramic acronymic message there in "Why not tell them of the
Cornish horror -- strangest case I have handled."? (WITH NTH SCOTCH)
Did Holmes almost face such a dilemma as Sterndale, the "lawless lion-hunter", having to choose life or death for the killer of the woman he might have loved? (Irene Norton? Lillie Langtry? Clare Stevens? Violet Hunter? Florence Schleswig-Holstein?)
Mr. E's Mysteries
Inspector Dunsel was sure that he had his man when he had, he thought, caught him in
a lie because he'd claimed he was at his father's art studio at the time of the crime but also that he was the son of a professor of mathematics. Why was he innocent?
We got a "sincere THANK YOU" from Pam McAllister to whom we sent info on the SIG and newsletter. "The response has been wonderful! My deadline was pushed back (thank heaven!) and I now expect to be writing this chapter in July. At this point, publication of The Bedside, Bathroom and Armchair Companion to
Sherlock Holmes is scheduled for spring 1998. I'll keep you posted."
From Femme Fatales (P. O. Box 3457, Lakewood, CA 90712-3457) we've gotten a catalog offering such Holmesiana as: calabash pipe, chess set, deerstalker cap,
handpainted pewter thimble, nesting dolls, journal, playing cards, shoehorn, umbrella, and walking stick.
Cort Reynolds writes us about his third trivia game book, The Final Problems: Sherlock Holmes Mystery Trivia. The object is to live long enough to make a complete circuit of the gameboard and return to 221-B.
"One-pipe questions have only two possible answern, two pipe problems have three
and three pipes have four options," he says.
There's 800 trivia, logic problems, fill-in-the-blank quotes from the Canon and from
movies and plays.
For more info call or fax at 419-634-9170 or e-mail at email@example.com. or access http://www.web-star.com/alternative/books.html.
Alex R. Blackwell writes: "I am an avid reader of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and a definite fan of Sherlock Holmes."
In Ken Pierce's book catalog (P.O. Box 332, Park Forest, IL 60466-0332) we se
offered: Scarlet in Gaslight: An Adventure in Terror by Martin Powell, illustrated
(WARNING: with some nudity) by Seppo Makinen -- described as Sherlock Holmes vs.
Dracula -- and their sequel A Case of Blind Fear, Sherlock Holmes vs. the Invisible Man; The Red-Headed League and Other Stories by Edith Meiser, illustrated by Frank
Giacoia, including "A Scandal in Bohemia" and three Meiser stories from their comic strip as well as 19 issues of their Sherlock Holmes comics; and The Hound of the Baskervilles, an illustrated adaptation from Ireland.
The Sherlock Holmes Crossword Puzzle Book by Ruth Lake Tepper combines condensed versions of 22 stories with crossword puzzles based on them and which
helps solve the mystery. An interesting idea, we'll try here, in an abbreviated sort
of way. 1 2 X 3 X
X 7 8
3. Holmes --- to study Cornish
6. distance squared
7. what logic is
9. gotten on feet
10. saint abbreviated
2. Cornish -----
3. Holmes ---- truth
5. kind of fruit
8. what e in i.e. is for
Peter Costello has written The Real World of Sherlock Holmes: The True Crimes Investigated by Arthur Conan Doyle. That would be, among othern, the 1907 case of George Edjali, falsely accused and convinced of cruelty to animals and writing threatening letters. He served three years of a seven year sentence and lost his law licence.
Doyle deduced the letters were written by a seafaring man by the references to the sea in them and the long intervals between them and that the animal's wounds must have been made by someone trained as a butcher.
His suspect was an old classmate of Edjali's who flunked out at 13, became an apprentice butcher and
then shipped out on a cattle ship.
Then there's the queries he got 1892-3 about starving maiden aunts, a disputed will in Bristol, missing
relatives, fugitives, an abused inventor or Ripperologists' theories and later in 1901 the more serious case of Ella Castle of San Francisco, a periodic klepto released into custody of her husband not able to plead
insanity (Act of 1883) or the 1909 Oscar Slater or 1910 Crippen cases.
"I never hear of such a case as this that I do not ... say: 'There, but for the grace of God, goes Sherlock Holmes." (BV)
Now that we've played "West End Adventures" a few times we can readily recomment it. For some there is a tendency to ferret out every clue Yardishly rather than following a
train of thought through logically and more quickly. Both kinds of detectives can enjoy the game.
It has a period London map, a city directory, newspapern, a casebook and cluebook
based, they claim, on the diary of Wiggins, Baker Street Irregular, "now living the
precarious life of an actor... and still helping out his mentor and friend.
Although the resources could easily be used in creating one's own apocryphal
adventures, Gary Grady and Suzanne Goldberg have put together six taking place between RC and CA, mid-September to mid-October, 1898.
"The Strange Case of Dr. Goldfire", i.e., Dr. G. Taubman Goldfire of the Bethlehem Asylum ("Bedlam") which may also lead to the investigation of burglar Bobby Fields' murder and Goldfire's mother Agnes' 32-year cold one.
"The Murder of Sherlock Holmes", the actor playing the detective in the play he wrote himself based on "A Scandal in Bohemia", not the Great Detective himself,
involves intrigue at the Drury Lane Theater, much checking and double checking of
alibis and logic. Characters include Charlie Chaplin, homosexuals and Chinese opium dealers.
"A Case of Identity" (another one, not the1887 one) involves murders (one in front
of 221B Baker St.!), coded messages, spies, the strange but apparently better than
average Dr. Imhoff from, of course, Bedlam.
"The Death of a Transylvanian Count", Count D'Albert, that is, whose body was
found inexplicably in Lord Peckham's grandfather's coffin, involves Germans,
Gipsies, Greeks, Hungarians, Rumanians and the Margarita Pearls.
"A Royal Hugger-mugger at the Savage Club", has to do with the murder of the
actress Lily Longtree, missing letters from Prince Edward, the Black Hand, Serbians,
Sarah Bernhardt and the Akbar Shah diamond. It concludes with Holmes lamentation over the passing of the Victorian era.
"A Simple Case of Murder", the murder of Mignon the Magnificent, one-time companion to the very rich Sir Clayton Partridge, is not so simple with the "help" of the detectives from the Yard, Paschal: Investigations or Barker's, or Matt Moser, Francis Baird, Martin Hewett, Andy Collins the Pinkerton