Acorn strikes Agatha Christie deal

Company acquires controling interest in estate

Rights to a majority portion of Agatha Christie’s literary estate has been purchased by Acorn Media Group.

Acorn acquired a 64% controlling interest in Agatha Christie Ltd. from Chorion, which gives the media company access to more than 80 novels and short story collections, 19 plays, nearly 40 telepics and characters including Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple.

Mathew Prichard, Christie’s grandson, remains chairman of Christie’s legacy company and its 36% holding.

“My family and I are delighted to be forming a new partnership with Acorn Media, which I am sure will … produce much more Agatha Christie material for fans everywhere, particularly in the U.S.,” Prichard said. “I remain grateful to my colleagues at Chorion for nearly 13 years of fruitful partnership.”

Acorn has been releasing TV adaptations of Christie works on video and digitally since 2001. ITV recently ordered more Christie content, and feature film adaptations are also in development.

“This is a momentous occasion for Acorn Media and a gratifying one for me personally,” Acorn chairman Peter Edwards said. “While we are keenly aware of the financial and strategic worth of this transaction for Acorn Media, we are also grateful to partner with the Agatha Christie family in the promoting and protecting of their family legacy.”

Other Acorn projects include a co-production of a new season of ITV’s “Foyle’s War,” which last aired Stateside on PBS “Mystery” in 2010. Acorn has released the skein on homevideo in North America since 2003, with seasons one and two ranking as the bestselling DVDs in Acorn history.

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