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Dec 16, 2009 at 12:04am IST

Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes premieres in London

London: London's Leicester Square saw fans hold on to their spots despite the winter chill, for a glimpse of their favourite stars. The premiere of Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes witnessed a handful of Hollywood's most popular faces descend on the red carpet.

Actors Robert Downey Jr, Jude Law, Rachel McAdams and others braved the unexpected showers and chatted cheerfully about participating in Ritchie's reinvention of such iconic literary figures.

Rachel McAdams said, "It's definitely a reinvention but I think it's not that far off from what Arthur Conan Doyle did. I only read the books after being involved with the film and I loved them."

Actor Mark Strong added, "What they have done is taken stuff from the novels and short stories - not new stuff, it's the same stuff. And they have just looked at it in a slightly different way."

A conscious departure from previous television and film adaptations of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories, Ritchie's film is as much a departure from his own gritty storytelling style. The new Sherlock Holmes film comes packed with bloated action scenes and set pieces. Yet the director insists that reinvention isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Guy Ritchie says, "I really haven't seen any other production of Sherlock Holmes but I had the books and I had an idea of how Sherlock Holmes should be and that's it."

Both Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law - who play Holmes and Watson in the new film - confess they did have reservations initially about depicting those characters, but overcame their concerns soon enough.

Robert Downey Jr says, "I like these kind of challenges."

Jude Law adds, "I had this picture of him (Watson) being portly and foolish. I liked the idea of re-evaluating him but what amazed me was how accurate the re-evaluation was. If you read back, you realise Watson was actually a tough guy - coming from the Afghan war, a surgeon, a doctor rather, and a true sidekick to Holmes rather than a blundering idiot."

The lousy weather notwithstanding, the stars and the fans succeeded in having an eventful evening.

With this interpretation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic sleuth stories, Guy Ritchie is clearly trying to present Sherlock Holmes in a new avatar from the one we've grown up with. But will old always be gold? Or will the new touch a chord? The answer will be out in a few weeks from now.