'Sherlock' Season 4: PBS says scheduling uncertainty is totally worth it

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sherlock-season-4-no-date-yet.jpgWe know that a fourth season of "Sherlock" is coming to PBS sometime in the next year or two, but the details are still very much up in the air.

Not knowing when it will arrive isn't ideal, PBS president and CEO Paula Kerger says, but the end product makes the uncertainty worthwhile.

"It's an amazing series. We're so proud to have it on public broadcasting, as you might imagine," Kerger said Tuesday (July 22) at the summer TV press tour. "If you've seen the past seasons, you know that it's shot beautifully and with talent that has now become very popular, so they're navigating around making sure they can get a window to [film] 'Sherlock.' ...

"Because it's coming to us from our partners in the U.K., we have to wait to know when it'll be finished, when it'll be available. We'll be watching for it and putting it in a great slot in the schedule. Of course it's more complicated if you can't plan further out of where you would schedule a program like that. But we're happy -- whenever it comes, we'll put it in a wonderful place. I know the next season is going to be terrific."

Whenever it does air, "Sherlock" probably once again won't be day-and-date with its U.K. premiere. Kerger has said it many times before, but the way PBS schedules the likes of "Sherlock" and "Downton Abbey" has worked. "Downton's" ratings rose 16 percent last year, she says.

"It is surprising to me," she says, "[with] a series that is available lots of different places that people can access, that people still are organizing Sunday nights so that they can be watching the program at the same time their friends and their family."
Photo/Video credit: PBS