Kenneth Branagh in Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express has spent over 80 years as a literary classic and over 40 years as a cherished movie adaptation, but earlier this month, Kenneth Branagh's remake of the Agatha Christie mystery laid new claim to the small screen. A relatively straightforward adaptation of the original tale, the new Murder on the Orient Express was met with mixed reviews and has so far collected more than $148 million worldwide. Now we've learned that this won't be the last time that the new Hercule Poirot appears on the big screen, as 20th Century Fox is putting a sequel into development.

Fox is bringing back Murder on the Orient Express screenwriter Michael Green to pen the sequel, which will be called Death on the Nile. According to Variety, although Kenneth Branagh hasn't signed a deal yet to both direct and reprise Hercule Poirot for this sequel, that's expected to be rectified soon.

The original Death on the Nile story was released in 1937, three years after Murder on the Orient Express' publication. In this tale, Hercule Poirot is on vacation in Cairo when he is tasked with solving the murder of a socialite named Linnet Doyle, who was caught up in a deadly love triangle between her husband, Simon Doyle, and Simon's former lover, Jacqueline de Bellefort. Joined by companion Colonel Race, Pirot must work fast aboard the cruise where Linnet met her demise to find the killer, though as the investigation continues, some of the suspects are eliminated. Death on the Nile was previously adapted for the big screen in 1978, which starred Peter Ustinov as Poriot, the first of his six appearances as the mustachioed detective. That movie was met with mixed reviews, although it went on to win an Academy Award for Best Costume Design. Death on the Nile was also adapted in the ninth series of the Agatha Christie's Poirot TV series.

Assuming this new Death on the Nile movie will follow in the footsteps of Murder on the Orient Express, then it will likely also be a faithful adaptation rather than take significant creative liberties. But aside from Kenneth Brangah reprising Hercule Poirot, its cast will be packed with new faces. With Robert Downey's Sherlock Holmes still out of commission, Branagh's Poirot is primed to become the leading old-timey, silver screen detective of the modern era. For now, I only have one request for the new Death on the Nile: just like with Murder on the Orient Express, the sequel must spare no expense in making sure Poirot's mustache looks glorious.

Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more news concerning Death on the Nile as it comes in, but in the meantime, look through our 2018 premiere guide to see what will be arriving in theaters next year.

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