While it's been widely believed that Brad Pitt is a cinch to play the treacherous Moriarty in the next Sherlock Holmes film, the current villain, played by actor Mark Strong, tells Moviefone that's news to him.

"Is he?" said Strong, who plays the devilish Lord Blackwood, when asked whether Pitt is a go for the 'Sherlock' sequel. "I know there were rumors flying around and I know they certainly would have loved to have Brad come in and do it." While it's been widely believed that Brad Pitt is a cinch to play the treacherous Moriarty in the next Sherlock Holmes film, the current villain, played by actor Mark Strong, tells Moviefone that's news to him.

"Is he?" said Strong, who plays the devilish Lord Blackwood, when asked whether Pitt is a go for the 'Sherlock' sequel. "I know there were rumors flying around and I know they certainly would have loved to have Brad come in and do it."

"I think there are other people in the frame, although I don't really know any names. But I know they wanted somebody impressive, so that if the film was the success that it is, it would leave the way free for someone to come in. And I think Brad and Guy [Ritchie] are friends from 'Snatch' days. It's as simple as that. I'm sure a conversation was had, but I honestly don't know if it means he's going to be in the next one. I've no idea."

This seems to contradict a recent report from Popeater's Rob Shuter, who was told by an industry source that Pitt is "very interested in taking on the role" and that Ritchie "can't wait to turn him into the world's greatest supervillain." Of course, nothing official has been announced yet, either way.

In the current film, the only glimpses we get of Sherlock Holmes' (Robert Downey Jr.) nemesis Moriarty is of his hands, but the ending paves the way for a Moriarty-Holmes showdown in the next film. Strong said he has no idea who "played" Moriarty in the current film, as Strong is not in any of those scenes.

Come back Wednesday for our full interview with Strong on working with Ritchie and Robert Downey Jr., his villainous roles in 'Body of Lies' and the upcoming 'Robin Hood,' opposite Russell Crowe, and how he feels about being mistaken for Stanley Tucci.