Updated 02:25 AM EDT, Thu, May 13, 2021

'Sherlock' Season 4 Update: New Season On Hold While Cumberbatch Films 'Doctor Strange'?

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BBC One has finally announced the release date of the Victorian episode of "Sherlock." According to a previous report from Deadline, the mysterious special, which is titled "The Abominable Bride," will premiere in the United States at 9PM ET on January 1, 2016 -- the same day that it will air in the United Kingdom.

The special follows Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock Holmes in 1890s London, along with his sidekick, Martin Freeman's Dr John Watson, and members from the show's original cast, including Amanda Abbington as Mary Morstan, Rupert Graves as Inspector Lestrade and Una Stubbs as Mrs Hudson.

The special is supposed to keep fans at bay while production is working on the fourth season of the series -- writer Mark Gatiss recently revealed to Entertainment Weekly that he's just finished writing the first episode.

But while the premiere for season four is ready, it seems that Cumberbatch isn't. As previously announced by The Telegraph, the actor is currently busy with other commitments, including filming for the upcoming Marvel movie, "Doctor Strange."

While his other projects are taking up time, Cumberbatch is very much still staying on as the well-loved detective, with co-producer Steven Moffat expressing that the continuation of the next season lies in the matter of scheduling.

No official announcement has been made regarding the fourth season yet, but Gatiss has already revealed that more adventures are set to come, and will even be "life-changing." He shared with Entertainment Weekly, "All I can say is, this is a major, life-changing series for the regulars. The repercussions of Moriarty's apparent return are far-reaching. It's very big stuff."

Fans recall that the third season, which aired early in 2014, ended in a cliffhanger that left fans to wonder for the last two years, whether or not Sherlock's nemesis Moriarty (Andrew Scott) was still alive. The show has been very coy about their response regarding Scott's return, and it does not look like there will be any hints during the Victorian special episode either.

As Carter Matt noted, "The Abominable Bride" is designed as a one-off classic, following the vein of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's series, so any clues about the fourth season may be subtle. Or, perhaps they might be revealed in the form of an Easter egg, but not related to the plot of the show as a whole.

There is no news yet as to when Season four will start filming, but for now, at least there's the Victorian episode to look forward to during the new year.

Check out the trailer for "The Abominable Bride" below:

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