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John Malkovich is Hercule Poirot in The ABC Murders. John Malkovich is Hercule Poirot in The ABC Murders.

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John Malkovich is a very different Hercule Poirot

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The BBC have released a first look image of John Malkovich in character as Hercule Poirot. He is playing the iconic detective in a new BBC adaptation of Agatha Christie’s The ABC Murders.

As you can see from the image below it’s a very different look to what we have seen of the detective before. Gone is the twirly oiled up moustache beloved by David Suchet and Albert Finney (the two most well known tv and movie Poirots) and instead there is a neat goatee and a homburg style hat. Malkovich has the right air of eccentricity to make the role his own though.

John Malkovich is Hercule Poirot in The ABC Murders.

John Malkovich looking like a very different Hercule.

Unlike the glossy ITV productions this take, written by Sarah Phelps, promises to have the darker edge that has marked the BBC and Mammoth Screen’s other recent Christie adaptations like And Then There Were None.

Malkovich said of his casting: “I’m honored to have been asked to play Hercule Poirot. It’s a role that’s been played by a number of excelllent actors, and I am enjoying the numerous challenges this part presents. I have great respect for Sarah Phelps’ screenplay and hope to do both she and Agatha Christie’s creation some measure of justice.”

The producers have also revealed that 2018 Olivier Award winning actress Shirley Henderson, Kevin McNally, Gregor Fisher and Poldark’s Jack Farthing will also join the previously announced all-star cast of Malkovich, Rupert Grint, Tara Fitzgerald and Andrew Buchan.

Also joining the cast in guest roles are Karen Westwood (The Alienist), Lizzy McInnerny (The Crown), Anya Chalotra (Wanderlust), Eve Austin (In The Flesh), Christopher Villiers (Hetty Feather), Suzanne Packer (Keeping Faith), Michael Shaeffer (Rogue One), Cyril Nri (Cucumber), Henry Goodman (Genius: Einstein), Tamzin Griffin (A Fantastic Fear Of Everything), Ian Pirie (Sunset Song), Shane Attwooll (Dark River) and Terenia Edwards (Peter Rabbit). Full list of cast and characters they play are below.

Bafta nominated writer Sarah Phelps returns to explore the 20th Century through Christie’s work. This time the setting is the 1930s, a time when the nation is dangerously divided and suspicion and hatred are on the rise. In the midst of this, Poirot faces a serial killer known only as A.B.C. First the killer strikes in Andover, then Bexhill. As the murder count rises, the only clue is the copy of The ABC Railway Guide at each crime scene. Poirot’s investigations are thwarted at every turn by an enemy determined to outsmart him. If Poirot is to match his nemesis then everything about him will be called into question: his authority, his integrity, his past, his identity.

Filming for The ABC Murders is underway and is directed by Alex Gabassi (The Frankenstein Chronicles, El Hipnotizador) and produced by Bafta nominated Farah Abushwesha (Irreplaceable You, The Party).

The ABC Murders is a Mammoth Screen and Agatha Christie Limited production for BBC One. The executive producers are Sarah Phelps, Damien Timmer and Helen Ziegler for Mammoth Screen, James Prichard and Basi Akpabio for Agatha Christie Limited and Elizabeth Kilgarriff for BBC. Amazon Prime Video will be airing the series in the U.S.

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