With the highly-anticipated third season premiere of BBC’s Sherlock right around the corner, it’s safe to say that there’s still a place for famed literary detectives in Hollywood today. In fact, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s brilliant sleuth may soon have a big-screen competitor, as 20th Century Fox recently announced that they are moving forward with a remake of the 1974 film Murder on the Orient Express, which was in turn an adaptation of a classic Agatha Christie mystery.
The story centers on astute Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, one of Christie’s most famous creations. While traveling through Europe on the titular locomotive, Poirot becomes embroiled in investigating the murder of a fellow passenger. With the train mired in a large snowdrift and a murderer still at large, the detective calls upon his renowned skills of deduction to find the culprit.
Ridley Scott is set to produce the film for 20th Century Fox, alongside Simon Kinberg and Mark Gordon. The studio is currently searching for a screenwriter to adapt the story.
The original Sidney Lumet-directed film, which starred Albert Finney (pictured above) as Poirot, was enthusiastically received in 1974. It received six Oscar nominations and won one (Best Supporting Actress for Ingrid Bergman’s performance). A remake certainly has large shoes to fill.
The original Murder on the Orient Express starred a large crop of Hollywood all-stars, so one has to wonder whether Fox’s goal in recruiting Scott, Kinberg and Gordon is to entice a sizeable group of current A-listers to sign on. The role of Poirot is an undeniably tricky one to cast, and Finney is definitely a tough act to follow. My suggestion? Fox should see what Ben Falcone’s schedule is looking like these days.
Given that it is only just being announced, Murder on the Orient Express is likely three or four years away. Scott is finishing up his Biblical epic Exodus and has a Prometheus sequel lined up, while Kinberg has his hands full producing future installments of Fox’s X-Men franchise, as well as The Fantastic Four. Meanwhile, Gordon is currently working to bring another Chronicles of Narnia to the big screen (this time, an adaptation of The Silver Chair).
Tell us, are you interested in revisiting this classic detective tale? Who would you cast in the new Murder on the Orient Express? Sound off below.