Gilles Paquet-Brenner opens Crooked House
by Naman Ramachandran
- Cast includes Glenn Close, Gillian Anderson, Terence Stamp and Christina Hendricks
Director Gilles Paquet-Brenner has commenced principal photography at UK locations on Crooked House, an adaptation of the 1949 novel by revered British mystery author Agatha Christie. When a wealthy and ruthless tycoon Aristide Leonides, is poisoned in his own bed, Detective Charles Hayward is dispatched to solve the crime. He is shocked to discover that one of the key suspects is Aristide’s beautiful granddaughter Sophia, Hayward’s fiancé and must also deal with the rest of her hostile family. The adaptation of Christie’s novel is by Julian Fellowes, winner of a screenplay Oscar for Robert Altman’s Gosford Park (2001) and the creator of the hugely successful Downton Abbey television franchise, alongside Paquet-Brenner and Tim Rose Price, writer of films such as Philippe Rousellot’s The Serpent’s Kiss (1997) and Andrew Piddington’s Sins of a Father (2014).
Paquet-Brenner won the Michel d’Ornano Award at the Deauville Film Festival for Pretty Things (2001), and Best Director and the Audience Award at the Tokyo International Film Festival for Sarah’s Key [+see also:
film profile] (2010). His last release was Dark Places [+see also:
film profile] (2015), starring Charlize Theron and Christina Hendricks.
Hendricks is also a part of the Crooked House cast that includes Glenn Close (who will be seen in Colm McCarthy’s 23 September release The Girl with All the Gifts [+see also:
film profile]); Gillian Anderson (one of the leads in Jeffrey D Brown’s Sold that released earlier this year); Max Irons (who made an impact in Lone Scherfig’s The Riot Club [+see also:
film profile]); British veteran Terence Stamp (part of Tim Burton’s 30 September release Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children); television star Stefanie Martini making her feature debut; and child actor Honor Kneafsey (Abducted).
Sally Wood produces alongside Joe Abrams of Brilliant Films (UK) and James Spring at Fred Films (UK). UK film financier Prescience is financing the film along with Hindsight, one of the two funds totalling £110 million they launched in 2012. Metro International is handling international sales and the film is pre-sold to Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions for Eastern Europe, North America, Latin America and South Africa, Germanic Europe to Concorde, Tele München’s distribution division, Spain to DeAPlaneta, Portugal to Lusomundo and Israel to Shoval.
Crooked House continues the Agatha Christie revival that began with the success of And Then There Were None by Mammoth Screen and Agatha Christie Productions for the BBC One television channel in 2015. In August 2016 BBC One and Agatha Christie Productions struck a deal for seven Christie television adaptations in the next four years beginning with Ordeal By Innocence, with Death Comes As The End and The ABC Murders the other confirmed titles so far. A television adaptation of The Witness For The Prosecution is in production already for BBC One. A feature adaptation of The Witness For The Prosecution by Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s Pearl Street Films for Twentieth Century Fox is being developed for Affleck to direct, as is Kenneth Branagh’s adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express for Genre Films.