Angelina Jolie Circles ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ Remake

Angelina Jolie Murder on the Orient
Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock

Angelina Jolie is in early talks to board Fox’s remake of “Murder on the Orient Express.”

Fellow actor/director Kenneth Branagh is helming the film, in addition to starring as Hercule Poirot. The producers are Branagh, Ridley Scott, Simon Kinberg and Mark Gordon. Michael Schaefer and Aditya Sood will also produce in some capacity.

Michael Green (“Blade Runner 2”) is writing the screenplay based on Agatha Christie’s novel, with Steve Asbell overseeing the production for Fox.

Christie’s book, published in 1934, revolves around a murder onboard the famous train. The film follows Belgian detective Poirot who’s tasked with solving the case — in which a number of passengers could potentially be the murderer.

Variety reported in 2013 that Fox was developing the project as a remake of Sidney Lumet’s 1974 movie, which starred Albert Finney as the genius detective investigating the murder of an American tycoon aboard the train. The all-star cast of suspects included Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Jacqueline Bisset, Colin Blakely, Sean Connery, John Gielgud, Anthony Perkins, Vanessa Redgrave and Michael York.

“Orient Express” was a commercial success, grossing $35 million in the U.S. It was also nominated for six Academy Awards, earning Bergman, who portrayed a Swedish missionary, her third Oscar — her first in the supporting category.

Christie’s novel was adapted again for a 2001 CBS show starring Alfred Molina and Leslie Caron.

Branagh’s directing credits include “Henry V,” “Thor” and “Cinderella.”

Jolie starred in and directed Universal’s 2015 drama “By the Sea” opposite spouse Brad Pitt.

The news about “Orient Express” was first reported by the Daily Mail.

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  1. patrik says:

    82 years commercial success, novel Orient Express -good long

  2. guest says:

    She can’t act and I don’t see her pulling this off. She has no friends men or women so how is she gonna be in an esemble cast, thst hilarious.

    • Faust says:

      Nothing confirmed, all a bunch of ‘may’ and ‘might’ but Angelina Jolie Voight hasn’t stopped running the PR machine. Keeps her from nodding off on Hollywood for a while.

      Also, spoiler alert, don’t read if you don’t know the movie: In the 1974 film, Mrs Hubbard was played by Lauren Bacall, then 50. Mrs Hubbard is old enough to have a grandchild – her young granddaughter was murdered five years earlier. And there’s no indication that Mrs Hubbard or her daughter were extremely young when they gave birth, so an age of 50 – 60 seems acceptable for the character. I don’t know how old she is in the book. So does Angelina Jolie Voight think she looks so old that she has to play a character 10 years older than she is? No, I think this is something her PR folks thought up. Lol!

      So who could play Mrs Hubbard? Julianne Moore maybe? Yeah. Personally I’d like to see Julianne Moore in the role. Susan Sarandon might be too old but she’d also be good, I think. I’d like to see Maggie Smith as the Princess Dragomiroff and Ian McKellen as the valet (the character played by Gielgud in the 1974 movie), although Branagh may want to cast Derek Jacobi, whom he already cast in his current stage production of Rome and Juliet (excellent, by the way, running in London until mid-August, try and see it if you can).

  3. JR says:

    IF this is an all-star cast, it might do well. I can’t imagine much of a younger crowd seeing a period piece unless there’s star power. Otherwise there’s always Lumet’s version, which did have an all-star cast.

  4. jj19871 says:

    As long as she’s not directing it.

  5. harry georgatos says:

    How’s this remake going to be different from Sidney Lumets highly excellent movie from 1974? One way is to set it in the present on a highly hi-tech super-train involving a murder conspiracy of an obnoxious multi-billionaire as the famous detective solves the murder. Otherwise just re-release the original in cinemas as everyone knows the ending!

    • Manuel Nogueira says:

      @harry georgatos: no ofense man, but they already did that in the 2001 version with Alfred Molina and it was just crap. It failed miserabily because it wasn’t Murder on the Orient Express, it was something else. Agatha Christie and Poirot simply don’t mix with modern times, it doesn’t work. I mean, Poirot using a computer or a smart phone to solve a murder? Hell no! It has to be set in the 1930’s and on the Orient Express, or it wont be Agatha Christie. Is it pointless to make yet another version of this story when it has already been adapted into a virtualy perfect film by Sidney Lumet in 1974 (the only thing that sucked was Albert Finney as Poirot, he was totaly wrong for the part, now if we had David Suchet as Poirot, it would be a perfect film, ansolutely perfect)? Yes, it is. Could they have chosen a different novel by Agatha Christie to adapt? Hell yes, I would love to watch a film version of Murder in Mesopotamia or Appointment with Death, to name just two (the tv versions with David Suchet are great, but I would love to see in the big screen). But its better to have MOTOE than no Agatha Christie. Its been way too long since they last adapted one of her novels to the big screen, and that was 1988’s Appointment with Death with Peter Ustinov as Poirot – almost 30 years!

      • harry georgatos says:

        It comes down to execution and all the elements of production coming together in a creative way. Who says the detective has to be Poirot it could be a modern day type detective instead of a 1930 era type sleuth. The movie you mention sounds like it was poorly developed and deserved it’s negative reactions.

        With the right type of director and writer anything is possible.

  6. Alex says:

    It’s a who dun it, and we know who dun it….EVERYONE!!

  7. Nanny Mo says:

    Well, unless they make up a NEW murder-ending, it’s been done and seen. Can anything be more BORING than a Christie murder movie in which you ALREADY know the ending!!!! Man, do any of these execs have ANY brains? No wonder they change them up every 20 days.

    • satireknight says:

      Like OMG, let’s not make a new Shakespeare adaptation, because we totally know Romeo and Juliet kill themselves! So boring.

    • Manuel Nogueira says:

      If they do that, it wont be MOTOE. Sure, the solution to the mystery is known by anyone who has seen the 1974 film, the David Suchet tv version or read the book, but I guess they’re betting there’s a lot of people out there who hasn’t seen it or read the book. Is it pointless? Yes, it is, but it will make money and that’s all that matters to these producers.

  8. EricJ says:

    After Branagh’s last movie literally cut the last act out of “Sleuth” to turn it into a gay pickup, I’m a little nervous about his taking on Hercule Poirot.
    (Even David Suchet’s usually spot-on TV version inexplicably cut the major clue out of the mystery, just so they could give him a Tragic Romantic Interest with the heroine.)

    They’ll never outdo Albert Finney–That was one of the showpieces of the 70’s Golden Era.

    • Rebecca B says:

      In the last decade or so, Daniel Craig and Benedict Cumberbatch took on roles that many, many people were convinced they had already seen the best versions of. And yet now, for some of those people, Craig and Cumberbatch have become the definitive Bond and Sherlock, respectively.

      There’s always room for another interpretation if it’s a good one.

      I had my doubts about the need for a live action “Cinderella,” but Branagh triumphed in its execution. He gets the benefit of the doubt from me on this one.

    • Manuel Nogueira says:

      Yeah, that worries me too. Branagh is a good actor, but I don’t know if he’s up to the chalenge of playing Poirot. And after David Suchet’s perfect portrayal of the character, I don’t know if anyone is. Mind you, Suchet’s Poirot might have been perfect, but his version of MOTOE is total crap, it was the biggest disapointment of my life. I was expecting a two hour version of the Lumet film with Suchet as Poirot, instead I got 80 minutes of that boring guilt fest with a religious zelot pretending to be Poirot. Talk about a turn off! Anyway, I just hope that Branagh takes Suchet’s early Poirot as his inspiration and not Finney or Ustinov.

  9. Angelina Jolie looks good in period pieces.

  10. Dunstan says:

    Terrific line up of people behind the project but I still have to ask “why?”

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