Rhys Ifans to play Sherlock Holmes’s brother in ‘Elementary’

He'll make his debut opposite Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu in the season two premiere

Rhys Ifans has joined the cast of Elementary, the hit US TV series that puts a contemporary spin on Sherlock Holmes.

The Welsh actor, recently seen as baddie The Lizard in The Amazing Spider-Man, has landed a recurring role as Sherlock’s older brother, Mycroft Holmes. He’ll make his debut in the season two premiere, which will be filmed in London, The Hollywood Reporter notes.

Set in present-day New York, Elementary stars Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Lucy Liu as his female sidekick Dr Joan Watson – a reversal of gender from the original novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Before it premiered on US network CBS last year (2012), the show attracted controversy for closely following the BBC’s more traditional Sherlock series. However, Elementary quickly established its own identity and achieved strong ratings throughout its first season in the US before being recommissioned this March (2013). In the UK, it airs on Sky Living.

“I could not be more excited to have Rhys coming aboard,” the show’s creator and executive producer Robert Doherty said in a statement. “I’ve always been a tremendous fan and feel very honoured to have him in the fold. Equally excited are Jonny and Lucy, both of whom have worked with Rhys in feature films. I think this is going to be a lot of fun for all of us.”

Season two of Elementary will begin on US network CBS on September 26. The first episode will see Miller’s Sherlock called back to London to revisit an old case, forcing him to confront his troubled relationship with brother Mycroft, with whom he suffered a rift some years previously.