It All Runs
In The Family



At first glance, the words family and Sherlock Holmes do not seem to fit together.
The detective is a solitary person by nature.
Nevertheless there are some people who by association or by blood are close to him.


Meet the most important people in Sherlock Holmes's life apart from Dr Watson.

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Mycroft Holmes

Mycroft Holmes is Sherlock Holmes's older brother and the only family member who personally appears in the stories.
He is a high-ranking official in the government. And he is even smarter than Sherlock as well as corpulent.

The most recognisable actor to have played Mycroft Holmes is undoubtedly
Charles Gray.

He first appeared as the elder Holmes brother in "The Seven-Per-Cent Solution" with Nicol Williamson as his younger sibling.

Later, Gray reprised the role successfully and most memorably in the Granada Series opposite Jeremy Brett.

Other actors who played Mycroft Holmes include:


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In "A Study in Terror", the British character actor Robert Morley added not only his professional weight to the role.

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Christopher Lee's elder Holmes was a rather skinny fellow in "The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes".

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Boris Klyulev played Mycroft in the Russian films opposite Vasily Livanov.

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Richard E. Grant is handicapped after Moriarty supplied him with drugs in "Sherlock: Case of Evil". This was a rather unusual interpretation of the role as is the complete movie.

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Mark Gatiss and Stephen Fry have taken up the part of Mycroft Holmes quite recently.

Mark Gatiss annoys Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock in the modern-day BBC series. He is also the co-creator of the new series together with Steven Moffat.

The multi-talented and highly acclaimed Holmesian Stephen Fry is the perfect choice to play the older Holmes brother opposite Robert Downey Jr.'s detective in the movie "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows".

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Rhys Ifans is also a rather skinny Mycroft Holmes but he is a perfect choice to play opposite Jonny Lee Miller as his younger brother in "Elementary".

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Mary Morstan

At first, Mary Morstan is just Holmes's client. She asks for his help in "The Sign of Four". During this case Doctor Watson falls in love with the governess. At the end he asks her to marry him. That's how she becomes a member of the detective's extended family.

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Isla Bevan asked Arthur Wontner's assistance and also fell in love with Ian Hunter as Dr Watson.

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Nigel Stock as Watson is enchanted by Ann Bell in the BBC series with Peter Cushing as Holmes.

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Cheri Lunghi as Mary Morstan asked the help of Ian Richardson's detective.

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Jenny Seagrove played the governess opposite Jeremy Brett and Edward Hardwicke.

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Sophie Lorain played the client in the Canadian production with Matt Frewer as Sherlock Holmes.

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Kelly Reilly is the latest actress to play Mary Morstan. In "Sherlock Holmes" she was still only Watson's fiancée, in "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows" they are on their honeymoon.

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Mrs Hudson

I also count Mrs Martha Hudson as extended family. The long-suffering landlady has to put up with a lot from her eccentric tenant:

Violin-playing at all times of the night, shooting exercises inside the house and the occasional malodorous chemical experiment would be a strain for any normal person.

Yet these fine women put up with it and much more:

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Minnie Rayner argued with Arthur Wontner's Holmes in four out of five films in the series.

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Mary Gordon's Scottish accent is endearing in the Basil Rathbone films.

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Rina Zelyonaya played the housekeeper for the Russian Sherlock Holmes, Vasily Livanov.

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Rosalie Williams is perhaps the most recognisable Mrs Hudson apart from Mary Gordon.
She played the good soul in Jeremy Brett's sometimes rather eccentric household during the Granada series.

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Pat Keen was a rather feisty housekeeper in "Without a Clue".
She was quite distraught when Dr Watson was supposedly killed.

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Geraldine McEwan is one of the latest additions to the league of landladies. She plays opposite Robert Downey Jr.'s Sherlock Holmes.

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In "Sherlock", Una Stubbs as a modern-day Mrs Hudson makes it quite clear that she is Holmes's and Watson's landlady and not their housekeeper.

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