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'Sherlock': A TV special episode coming to a theater near you

A special episode of 'Sherlock' that is set in Victorian times will premiere in both the US and Britain this January. Fans can also view the episode, titled 'Sherlock: The Abominable Bride,' in select movie theaters that same month.

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    'Sherlock' stars Benedict Cumberbatch (r.) and Martin Freeman (l.).
    Robert Viglasky/Hartswood Films and BBC Wales for BBC One and MASTERPIECE
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Those behind the BBC TV show “Sherlock” have announced an air date for an upcoming special for British and American viewers as well as movie theater plans.

An upcoming episode of “Sherlock,” which is based on the stories by Arthur Conan Doyle but takes place in modern times, will bring Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Watson (Martin Freeman) back to Victorian times.

In addition, American fans will no longer have to wait to see the episode until after their British counterparts. While the newest season of the show, its third, premiered in Britain a few weeks before it aired in America, the upcoming special episode of “Sherlock” will air in the US and in Britain on Jan. 1. 

In addition, fans can head to their local multiplex to see Sherlock and Watson on the big screen. Following the special’s TV air date, the Victorian special, which is titled “Sherlock: The Abominable Bride,” will be screening in movie theaters on Jan. 5 and Jan. 6. 

“Bride” screening in movie theaters follows the success HBO and the BBC have had with screening episodes of “Game of Thrones” and “Doctor Who,” respectively, in movie theaters. In 2013, when the BBC brought a special fiftieth-anniversary episode of “Doctor Who” to movie theaters, the episode did extremely well at the box office. Those behind “Doctor Who” have continued to bring episodes of the show to movie theaters since, with the most recent screening in movie theaters this past September. 

Meanwhile, two episodes of the popular fantasy series “Game of Thrones” were screened in movie theaters this past February and those did well financially also. With both “Thrones” and “Who,” the TV episodes had already aired, yet fans still came out to see the episodes in theaters. Clearly this is a lucrative enterprise if the TV show has a strong fan base. 

Meanwhile, “Sherlock” fans are no doubt happy to hear that the upcoming TV special will air in the US and in Britain on the same day. Many TV fans have complained when British shows aired in the US after they did in Britain. One show that has particularly attracted ire for doing so is the British program “Downton Abbey” – multiple months can elapse between British and American season premieres, as with the show’s current season, which premiered in Britain in September but won’t air in the US until January. 

While the lag between British and American premiere dates for the previous “Sherlock” season was much less than that, “Sherlock” fans will no doubt be happy to not have to worry about shielding themselves from spoilers online for weeks in between. 

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