Danny Dyer: “I know I’ve got the talent to play Sherlock”

Benedict Cumberbatch is “brilliant” as the detective says the EastEnders star. “Any actor would love that role. You can’t go wrong with it”

A cockney Sherlock investigating the murder of Lucy Beale on Albert Square? Even Danny Dyer’s not convinced about that one. But the EastEnders star tells Radio Times he does believe he’s got the talent to step into the shoes of Benedict Cumberbatch’s detective in the cult BBC1 drama, which he says would be a “dream” role.


“Any actor would love that role. You can’t go wrong with it. You’re playing a genius, and the speed of the dialogue… I’m sure it’s a tough gig but it’s every actor’s dream to play that sort of role.”

But Dyer, who plays Queen Vic landlord Mick Carter in the BBC soap, admits his Sherlock could lose something in the delivery.

“I know I’ve got the talent to do it, but I don’t think they’d want a slightly cockney Sherlock. I think it works better with the articulation [of Cumberbatch].”

Dyer says he was initially sceptical about the modern-day take on Sherlock Holmes but was persuaded to watch it and quickly became hooked. He praised Cumberbatch’s performance as well as that of his co-star Martin Freeman who plays the detective’s partner in crime-solving, Dr John Watson.

“I never really entertained it for some reason,” says Dyer of the series. “Everyone was driving me mad about it and after a time, I decided to have a go on it and I was hooked. I love Martin Freeman, I think he’s a really interesting actor and Benedict – it’s just a great part. I think he’s brilliant.”

Dyer’s EastEnders character is definitely one of the good guys but the actor is no stranger to playing villains, having starred as a football hooligan, a convict and a gangster. Maybe that’s something to think about ahead of the return of Sherlock…

Read the full interview with Danny Dyer in the new issue of Radio Times magazine, on sale from Tuesday