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Sparkling Cyanide (ITV 2003, Pauline Collins, Oliver Ford Davies)

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Sparkling Cyanide (ITV 2003, Pauline Collins, Oliver Ford Davies)

Pauline Collins, Kenneth Cranham, Susan Hampshire and Oliver Ford Davies head an all-star cast in a contemporary dramatisation of Agatha Christie’s Sparkling Cyanide.

This single drama updates and relocates the classic murder mystery to a glamorous 21st century world of London socialites, secret agents – and the highest corridors of power.

Adapted by Laura Lamson, the film also stars Lia Williams, James Wilby, Chloe Howman, Clare Holman, Jonathan Firth and Justin Pierre.

In a glitzy London nightspot, an ambitious soccer club celebrates victory. The 20-something wife of chairman George Barton (Kenneth Cranham) drinks a champagne toast … and slumps to the floor dead in the full gaze of her fellow guests.

The potential for scandal is enormous. The dead woman had a lover, who just happens to be Stephen Farraday (James Wilby), the ambitious Minister for Sport

Enter Geoffrey (Oliver Ford Davies) and Catherine (Pauline Collins), a respectable late middle-aged couple, whose dependable and somewhat dull life is a cover for their real roles as trusted and valued agents for the British Intelligence Service.

Geoffrey and Catherine set out on the trail of the murderer. There’s no shortage of suspects but the situation is made even more complicated when one of the prime suspects becomes a victim.

production details
UK / ITV-1 – Company Pictures – Chorion PLC / 1×100 minute episodes / Broadcast 5 October 2003

Writer: Laura Lamson / Novel: Agatha Christie / Producer: Suzan Harrison / Director: Tristam Powell

cast
PAULINE COLLINS as Dr Catherine Kendall
OLIVER FORD DAVIES as Colonel Geoffrey Reece
KENNETH CRANHAM as George Barton
JONATHAN FIRTH as Mark Drake
SUSAN HAMPSHIRE as Lucilla Drake
CLARE HOLMAN as Alexandra Farraday
JAMES WILBY as Stephen Farraday
LIA WILLIAMS as Ruth Lessing
DOMINIC COOPER as Andy Hoffman
JACK FORTUNE as Phillip MCCAIN
CHLOE HOWMAN as Iris Marie
JUSTIN PIERRE as Carl Fitzgerald

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