Third Agatha Christie Movie in Development by Kenneth Branagh and 20th Century Studios

Third Agatha Christie Movie in Development by Kenneth Branagh and 20th Century Studios

20th Century Studios has already greenlit a sequel to the Agatha Christie screen adaptation, Death on the Nile, which was just released in theaters last month. Despite the current follow-up being plagued with controversy over several cast members’ persona lives and only earning just over $10 million over its budget at the global box office, the studio is still proceeding with a third entry in the film series.

20th Century Studios’ president, Steve Asbell confirmed the news while speaking with The Hollywood Reporter. The franchise’s third screen adaptation will once again star current Oscar nominee Kenneth Branagh (for the coming-of-age drama, Belfast) as Belgium detective Hercule Poirot.

A script has already been written for the upcoming mystery movie. Asbell confirmed that not only will Branagh return as the star of the second sequel, but also as the director. The studio’s president also revealed that the next film will be based on one of the lesser-known novels in the franchise and will have a shift in tone from the first two movies.

“We have the Poirot franchise, we have other Christie stories,” Asbell said. “I love these films, I love Ken [Branagh].

“We have a third script written, by Michael Green [who also wrote Death on the Nile and the first installment in the series, 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express], that is a pretty daring shift in genre and in tone,” 20th Century Studio’s president noted. “It’s post-war Venice.”

Besides Branagh, Murder on the Orient Express also stars an ensemble cast that includes Penélope Cruz, Willem Dafoe as Cyrus Bethman, Judi Dench, Johnny Depp, Josh Gad, Leslie Odom Jr., Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley and Olivia Colman. The franchise’s first entry went on to gross over $350 million at the global box office, which led to the Death on the Nile adaptation.

The ensemble cast of the series’ current entry includes Branagh, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Russell Brand, Rose Leslie, Sophie Okonedo and Letitia Wright. The sequel has made just over $102.4 million worldwide, due to not only the controversies linked to several of its cast members, but also its multiple delays caused by COVID-19.

Death on the Nile, which is based on Christie’s 1937 novel of the same name, tells the daring story about the emotional chaos and deadly consequences triggered by obsessive love. Besides its significant drop in box office returns from its predecessor, the follow-up also received mixed reviews from critics.

Check out more of Karen Benardello’s articles.

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