PBS to air 'Sherlock' special, 'Unlocking Sherlock,' before Season 3

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PBS will air a "Sherlock"-themed special, "Unlocking Sherlock," on Sunday, Jan. 12, one week before the Season 3 premiere.

"Unlocking Sherlock" explores the creation of the contemporary retelling by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss of the Sherlock Holmes story.

"As excitement builds for the new season of 'Sherlock' on Masterpiece, we invite viewers to join us as we delve into the writers' inspiration for the modern-day Sherlock Holmes that has captivated fans nationwide," PBS programming executive Beth Hoppe said in a statement to UPI. "This special highlights the transformation of [19th century author] Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's most-portrayed character into a cultural phenomenon."

The series, starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman, will return with new episodes on Jan. 1 in the UK and on Jan. 19 in the United States. A mini-episode, "Many Happy Returns," was released online Tuesday (Dec. 24).

Watch the "Sherlock" mini-episode here.

Photo/Video credit: PBS