Kenneth Branagh has assembled another A-list ensemble for his next Agatha Christie adaptation: A Haunting in Venice.
According to Deadline, Kyle Allen, Camille Cottin, Jamie Dornan, Tina Fey, Jude Hill, Ali Khan, Emma Laird, Kelly Reilly, Riccardo Scamarico, and Michelle Yeoh have joined the cast of the 20th Century Studios film, which will once again star Branagh as Inspector Hercule Poirot.
Branagh will also return to direct the film. Michael Green adapted the script, which is based on Christie’s 1969 novel Hallowe’en Party. Production is currently underway outside of London at Pinewood Studios.
A Haunting in Venice is set in “eerie, post-World War II Venice on All Hallows’ Eve” and is “a terrifying mystery featuring the return of the celebrated sleuth, Hercule Poirot. Now retired and living in self-imposed exile in the world’s most glamorous city, Poirot reluctantly attends a séance at a decaying, haunted palazzo. When one of the guests is murdered, the detective is thrust into a sinister world of shadows and secrets.”
Here’s what Branagh had to say on the upcoming threequel:
“This is a fantastic development of the character Hercule Poirot, as well as the Agatha Christie franchise. Based on a complex, little known tale of mystery set at Halloween in a pictorially ravishing city, it is an amazing opportunity for us, as filmmakers, and we are relishing the chance to deliver something truly spine-chilling for our loyal movie audiences.”
A Haunting in Venice marks Branagh’s third Hercule Poirot mystery for 20th Century after 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express and 2022’s Death on the Nile. It’s a partnership that 20th Century Studios is presumably excited to continue. Here’s what the president of the studio, Steve Asbell, said about the studio’s relationship with Branagh:
“We are enormously privileged to continue our long collaboration with the incomparable Sir Kenneth Branagh and couldn’t be more excited by the bold new creative direction Ken, Michael, and the rest of the filmmaking team have taken with this latest film. We also remain grateful to James Prichard and the rest of our friends at Agatha Christie, Ltd., for their partnership and for once again entrusting us with, as Poirot modestly calls himself, ‘probably the greatest detective in the world.'”
I have quite enjoyed Branagh’s first two Poirot mysteries and will definitely welcome more with open arms. I definitely think the budget for this third film is probably several million less than the previous two films since there are not as many well-known names listed as part of the cast (compared to Johnny Depp, Willem Dafoe, Penélope Cruz, and Judi Dench in Murder, and Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Annette Bening, and Russell Brand in Death). But it sort of makes sense that the budget would have been cut following the less-than-stellar performance Death on the Nile had at the box office earlier this year.
A Haunting in Venice is scheduled to open in theaters on September 15, 2023.
What do you think of the cast for Branagh’s third Hercule Poirot film? Are you interested in seeing this threequel?