All rise for a brand new TV adaptation of short story, The Witness for the Prosecution.
Following the success of last year’s three-part thriller And Then There Were None, Agatha Christie will be back on your screens this year with a new two-part adaptation of Christie’s 1925 short story, 'The Witness for the Prosecution'. Adapted by Sarah Phelps (And Then There Were None, The Casual Vacancy) and directed by Julian Jarrold (The Crown, The Girl), The Witness for the Prosecution will be co-produced by Mammoth Screen and Agatha Christie Productions.
1920s London. A murder, brutal and bloodthirsty, has stained the plush carpets of a handsome London townhouse. The victim is the glamorous and enormously rich Emily French. All the evidence points to Leonard Vole, a young chancer to whom the heiress left her vast fortune and who ruthlessly took her life. At least, this is the story that Emily’s dedicated housekeeper Janet Mackenzie stands by in court. Leonard however, is adamant that his partner, the enigmatic chorus girl Romaine, can prove his innocence.
We will keep you updated on the progress of the adaptation as it happens.
Now is the moment when stimulus material is called out for to prompt in depth discussion and show the background. This is what they do on television when an event or production is in the offing. Also, I am saying this to be helpful - please tell your other moderators the facts, because it looks odd for GCKFan to be asking you questions about when the film is going to be made, when you both work for AgathaChristie Limited.
I found another article about rights to producing Christie films in other languages for other countries. The article was a couple of years old - April 2nd 2014 - but, nevertheless, about ongoing developments. Apparently, what Alison Rayson, CEO at Raydar, calls the 'big brands' of Poirot and Marple, are not the only names to be ripe for dramatising. (True, but ironic to think what Jane Marple would have thought of herself becoming, one day, a big brand!) Quoting Ms Rayson, the article says:
' The prolific nature of Christie's works, however, means there are many other untapped and richly dramatic characters - equally brilliant sleuths including Colonel Race, Ariadne Oliver Sven Hjerson - who can be developed , brought to new audiences and become Nordic, German and French success stories in their own right.'
So, Madame Doyle, there is the means of generating interest in Christie's works in countries where English is not the main language. That is a great aim, and links with what we have been discussing on the forum. Very exciting. I think Colonel Race would have been flattered to hear himself described as a 'brilliant sleuth', and Sven Hjerson - well that brilliant sleuth is going to take quite a bit of development I should think to bring out the real nuances which Dame Agatha intended but was pretty subtle about including in her major works.
Thank you for the article links! It's encouraging to see that Agatha Christie's work is being explored in other languages than English. I have certainly enjoyed Nordic noir series and others in translation to English, such as Maigret, and it's a shame if Christie's work is unknown to other cultures because she was so important in developing the crime fiction genre. She challenged nearly every assumption that mystery readers might have, and as we have mentioned in other threads on this forum, much of the way readers view the mystery genre (including films) is shaped by the work Agatha Christie did. Possibly ABC Murders more than any other book has been used as an inspiration. It wasn't just her creative plot devices but her creative technique, which she developed herself, that set her apart. One of the benefits of reading her work in chronological order is to watch this development of style. Murder on the Orient Express is the best example of her artistic and technical control in writing, and that's one of the reasons why it's so difficult to get a film version perfected--a script writer who is adept at all the juggling and paring is vital or it becomes too unwieldy.
I agree with you that introducing Col. Race or other characters in films rather than focusing so much on Poirot and Marple is a means of attracting new fans. Something different is called for anyway. Agatha Christie's name rather than Poirot and Marple should be the brand. Generational research shows that younger people are feeling respect for those of their grandparents' ages more than previous recent generations have done, and the writers of the Marple series did a good job of making her likable to a vast audience. Hopefully they can further the interest in Agatha Christie by presenting other lesser known characters who are just as attractive and likable. If they strengthen Christie's name as the brand, the stand alone novels would be excellent choices to promote as well, without having to interject Marple into them in order to include them in a series. That was an unfortunate decision on someone's part.