A Haunting in Venice location guide: Where was the latest Poirot film shot?
RadioTimes.com went on an immersive tour around Venice – you can watch the highlights below.
Now he's returned with a third adaptation, this time based on a far lesser known entry in the Christie canon, namely her 1969 work Hallowe'en Party.
Clearly feeling that the novel's quaint English countryside setting would be something of a letdown after the altogether more exotic locales of his previous films, Branagh has shifted the action to Venice – one of several changes in a film that's only very loosely inspired by the aforementioned book.
"It's a mystery movie," the film's Italian line producer Enrico Ballarin told RadioTimes.com and other media when introducing a special screening of the film in Venice.
"And what town... what is a better place than Venice to set a mystery?"
He added: "Every place you go is mysterious – I hope you have the chance to go round Venice at night and you can see even more how mysterious it is.
"And so I think it was the perfect idea to set the film by Kenneth Branagh, to move the action of the film from the novel by Agatha Christie – which is in the countryside of England – to Venice."
"It was Ken's idea," producer Judy Hofflund added in an exclusive interview with RadioTimes.com. "He loves Venice as a city and he said at the beginning, 'I find that it's both very serene and sinister'.
"You know, like you could look around every corner and something could be unusual."
While most of A Haunting in Venice's interiors were filmed on a constructed Palazzo set at Pinewood Studios in London, the cast and crew also spent more than a week shooting in Venice itself, with many of the city's most iconic landmarks appearing in the film.
To mark the release, RadioTimes.com was invited on a special immersive tour of the city to show some of those locations – you can watch the video above or read on for more information.
A Haunting in Venice location guide
Conservatorio di Musica Benedetto Marcello
A conservatory of music since 1876, the Conservatorio di Musica Benedetto Marcello is housed in Palazzo Pisani a Santo Stefano - which was built between 1614 and 1615.
It is the second largest Palazzo in Venice – with an area of roughly 14,000 square meters – and boasts an impressive roof terrace that features prominently at the beginning and end of the film, where Poirot is seen enjoying his retirement before taking on his latest case.
Isola San Giorgio Maggiore
The island San Giorgio Maggiore is one of Venice's most iconic spots and has appeared in numerous artworks, including a series by Claude Monet – so it's no surprise that it's used for establishing shots in the film.
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The island's church - which was designed by Andrea Palladio in the 16th century – is especially prominent, and one scene early in the film shows Poirot doing a spot of shopping at a market in its churchyard.
The Palazzo Ducale is another of Venice's most well-known locations, having historically served as the residence of the Doge of Venice, the supreme authority of the former Republic of Venice.
First built in 1340, it has been extended and modified several times and has been operating as a museum since 1923 – and we had a creepy surprise waiting for us when we visited on our Venetian tour...
Piazza San Marco
Venice's main square, Piazza San Marco, also features in various shots – no surprise given it is home to several of the city's most iconic buildings, including St Mark's Basilica (pictured) and the Clock Tower, which you can read more about below.
"I love Piazza San Marco, it's so beautiful," producer Judy Hofflund explained in an interview with RadioTimes.com. "And we shot that a lot and we had unbelievably great access – they let us go up to the top of the Clock Tower, they let us go into the palace of the Doge with nobody else – it was a very welcoming city for production."
The Clock Tower
The incredible Clock Tower – a building dating back to the early Renaissance period – first appears in an establishing shot towards the beginning of the movie, while in one scene Poirot scales the tower for a view of the city.
Situated on the north side of the Piazza San Marco, it is particularly noteworthy for the two bronze figures that strike the bell on the hour. Close inspection of the figures reveals one to be old and the other to be young – intended to symbolise the passing of time.
Gondolas on the canals of Venice
It wouldn't be Venice without exploring the city's networks of canals – and the best way of navigating them is undoubtedly by taking a trip on one of the 400 or so gondolas.
This method of transport is used by several of the characters in the film, with Poirot taking in many of the city's other sights this way, and several of the characters arriving via gondola for the séance which kickstarts the movie.
Other Venetian landmarks that can be seen during the film include the Palazzo Malipiero, Scala Contarini del Bovolo, Palazzo Pisani, Santa Maria dei Miracoli, and Campo San Giacomo dell’Orio.
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