‘Sherlock’ season 4 premiere date announced, but Benedict Cumberbatch & company may call it quits

Happy new year, “Sherlock” fans! It has been announced that the PBS Masterpiece series will return for its long-awaited fourth season on January 1, 2017, in both the US and UK. Like previous seasons, the new batch will consist of three episodes, starting with “The Six Thatchers” (watch the trailer above). But this could be the end of the road for this re-imagining of the iconic detective.

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Star Benedict Cumberbatch told GQ in September, “It feels like the end of an era, to be honest. It goes to a place where it will be pretty hard to follow on immediately.” However, he added, “We never say never on the show. I’d love to revisit it, I’d love to keep revisiting it … The idea of never playing him again is really galling.”

It’s sad to consider the show’s probable conclusion in 2017, but it’s fairly remarkable that the show made it this far considering how much has changed for its stars since it began in 2010. Cumberbatch has become an international superstar, earning a Best Actor Oscar nomination for “The Imitation Game” (2014) and taking on a major role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the title hero in “Doctor Strange,” which opens on November 4.

Dish ‘Sherlock’ with Hollywood insiders in our notorious forums

Martin Freeman, who plays Sherlock’s trusted companion John Watson, has been just as busy. He headlined Peter Jackson‘s “The Hobbit” (2012-2014) and also appeared in the first season of the FX anthology series “Fargo” (2014). And because it seems no actor in the world can escape the gravitational pull of Marvel, he too had a role in the MCU, playing counter-terrorist operative Everett K. Ross in “Captain America: Civil War” (2016).

Cumberbatch and Freeman both won Emmys for “Sherlock”: Best Movie/Mini Actor and Best Movie/Mini Supporting Actor, respectively, for their performances in the episode “His Last Vow” in 2014. The series has won nine Emmys over the course of its run so far, including a surprise victory for Best TV Movie in 2016 for “The Abominable Bride.”

Are you excited for new episodes of “Sherlock” at last, saddened that this might be the end, or a mixture of both? Watch the season four trailer above, and discuss “Sherlock” and more in our TV forum.

Predict the Golden Globe nominations now; change them till December 12

Be sure to make your Golden Globe predictions. How do you think “Sherlock” will do with Hollywood Foreign Press voters? Weigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how this series is faring in our Golden Globe odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on December 12 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Globes taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.

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