As we’ve previously reported, Brett Ratner wants Robert Downey Jr. to portray American publisher Hugh Hefner in his biopic Playboy. EW has listed a few other projects that he’s currently rumored for, most notably Warner Bros. and Guy Ritchie‘s upcoming big budget revamp of Sherlock Holmes. What else?

“In recent weeks, the 43-year old actor has had his eye on various projects, including Twentieth Century Fox’s Travis McGee (based on John D. MacDonald’s detective series), Warner Bros.’ Sherlock Holmes update from director Guy Ritchie, Gary Ross’ fantasy/comedy Dog Years at Universal…”

Director Gary Ross (Seabiscuit) has had Dog Years in the pipeline for several years now, with Jim Carrey attached at one point, but not a lot is known about it. John D. MacDonald‘s novels featuring Travis McGee, a wistful Floridian gumshoe, “beach bum” and “playboy,” stretched across the ’60s, ’70s and early ’80s and are said to have inspired crime fiction writers like Elmore Leonard. The McGee character made it to theaters once before in 1970′s ill-received Darker Than Amber. Like Zodiac or Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, this war-chest of material sounds like it would play to Downey’s wittier strengths.

Of course, like McGee, Sherlock Holmes would also give Downey a second viable franchise at a studio to compliment Iron Man, as Warner Bros. is positioning the classic character as a James Bond type. EW didn’t specify whether the actor would be up for the title role per se; less likely, but Downey would make a cool Watson too. When all is said and done, however, it’s gotta be hard as hell to turn down Hefner.

Discuss: Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes, cool by you? Any fans of the Travis McGee detective stories?

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