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When is Agatha Christie adaptation Death on the Nile out in UK cinemas? Who is in the cast?

The follow-up to Murder on the Orient Express sees Sir Kenneth Branagh (and his moustache) return.

Death on the Nile
20TH CENTURY STUDIOS
Published: Tuesday, 4th January 2022 at 11:24 am

Sir Kenneth Branagh and his ludicrous moustache will soon return to the big screen as Agatha Christie’s iconic detective Hercule Poirot in a follow-up to 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express.

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The sequel is an adaptation of Christie’s 1937 novel that saw Poirot tasked with solving a case while he holidayed in Egypt – which was previously made into a 1978 film starring Peter Ustinov as the enigmatic Belgian sleuth.

Much like the first murder mystery, Death on the Nile also features a star-studded ensemble cast including two national treasures (Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders), a Sex Education star (Emma Mackey) and even two superheroes (Wonder Woman Gal Gadot and Black Panther’s Shuri star Letitia Wright).

Talking about the upcoming whodunnit and how it will add darker and more sultry tones to Christie’s template, Branagh - who directs and stars in the upcoming movie - explained on The Fourth Wall podcast (via The Playlist): "Love, as he says, is not safe and it's certainly not safe in this version. Michael Green [the screenwriter] really has deepened the connection with the character [Poirot]. Going off of Agatha Christie's personal treatment of it, his deepening of what Poirot goes through in relation to the story and then the power and sexiness of lust and love as it runs through the story is very strong.

“It's a very dark, very sexy, unsettling kind of film," he continued. "It certainly delivers on the travelogue as it takes you to big and exciting different places, but it's very uncomfortable in ways people will really understand because it has to do with love, possession, lust, jealousy, big primal emotions that really get in people's way."

Without further ado, read on for everything we know about the murder mystery so far – including release date delays and a look at the second trailer for the movie.

When is Death on the Nile released in UK cinemas?

Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders in Death on the Nile (2022)
Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders in Death on the Nile 20th Century Studios/YouTube

Death on the Nile is currently set for a release date of 11th February 2022.

The film is no stranger to delays and has previously been pushed back several times due to the coronavirus pandemic and anxiety over box office takings.

It was originally earmarked for a festive release in 2019, before being moved to 23rd October 2020.

However, another release shake-up then saw 20th Century Studios schedule the film for a Christmas premiere in 2020, before that too was pushed back.

What is Death on the Nile about?

In the book, Poirot is pulled into a murder investigation while he is trying to enjoy a holiday in Egypt. He is approached by a socialite, Linnet, who wants to prevent her friend Jacqueline from stalking her after she had married Jacqueline's fiancé - a request which the detective politely turns down.

But when Linnet is shot dead while travelling on a steamer up the Nile (on which Poirot is also a passenger) it falls to the detective to find the person responsible. Although the most obvious suspect is Jacqueline, no passenger on the boat is safe from Poirot's investigation.

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It remains to be seen whether screenwriter Michael Green will be completely faithful to the book - as was largely the case with his Murder on the Orient Express script (although there were a few relatively minor changes) or whether he will opt to go down the Sarah Phelps route and provide a modern twist. We suspect this will stick fairly close to the source material though!

Talking about Christie's template, Branagh explained on The Fourth Wall podcast (via The Playlist): “Agatha Christie really believed in what she wrote. I think it was born out of personal experience being in bruising love relationships. She says in the introduction to the paperback version that she believes it has something of life in it and it really does. I think it’s universality, the recognition for anyone who’s been dangerously in love or as Poirot says in the book, in any relationship, there’s always the one that loves too much and it can hurt terribly.”

How does it tie into Murder on the Orient Express?

The books themselves don't connect to each other beyond the presence of Hecule Poirot, so it seems likely that the same will be true of the films - although given Branagh is starring in and directing both they are likely to contain aesthetic and stylistic similarities.

And another similarity is that they both involve Poirot trying to solve a murder aboard a mode of transport - just that a train has been substituted for a boat!

Who is in the cast of Death on the Nile?

Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Letitia Wright – Death on the Nile cast
Karwai Tang/Jon Kopaloff/Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images

In addition to Branagh - who followed in the footsteps of the likes of Albert Finney and David Suchet in playing the iconic detective in the aforementioned 2017 film - a host of Hollywood celebrities and rising stars are set to inject a bit of glamour to the film by appearing in leading roles.

Wonder Woman herself Gal Gadot plays the socialite Linnet, Armie Hammer (Call Me by Your Name) takes on the role of her new husband Simon and Black Panther breakout star Letitia Wright plays Rosalie Otterbourne, the daughter of a romance novelist and a key suspect in the case.

Sex Education's Emma Mackey portrays the revenge-seeking Jacqueline, while other stars in The Death on the Nile cast include Annette Bening, Sophie Okonedo, Russell Brand, Rose Leslie and Ali Fazal, and there are also roles for both Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders.

Killing Eve star Jodie Comer had originally been linked with a role - with Branagh previously stating that “all being well” she would take on a lead role, but it seems that this hasn't transpired after all. It is thought that Comer would have played Rosalie Otterbourne, the role that has instead gone to Wright.

Meanwhile Tom Bateman returns as Poirot's offsider, Bouc.

Death on the Nile trailer

You can get a first glimpse of the new film - and a reminder of the wonders of Kenneth Branagh's huge moustache - by checking out the below trailer, which dropped in August 2020.

20th Century Studios debuted a second trailer for the upcoming murder mystery in December 2021, which gives fans another glimpse at the star-studded cast. Watch below:

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