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Entries in Murder on the Orient Express (6)

Thursday
Jun012017

"Orient Express" Teaser Trailer Arrives!

Chris here. We've been obsessively tracking the developments of Kenneth Branagh's Murder on the Orient Express here at The Film Experience, so of course we have to share the first trailer. 

One of the open questions for the film we've had about the film was tone - would this be a campy lighthearted romp full of famous faces or a more morbid serious-minded mystery true to Agatha Christie's text? From the look of this first teaser we'll be served something in between. And with plenty of attention paid to each star of this massive ensemble, even if our eyes naturally wander to Michelle Pfeiffer. 

In a nifty bit of character introduction, Branagh takes us through the train car and the various characters in one take before giving the big reveal to his Poirot. We're already sold on the film, so we won't do the full Yes No Maybe So. But TAG YOURSELF as one of the passengers in the comments based on your response to this teaser - I'm Daisy Ridley's mildly concerned Governess (that rock anthem coda has me a little worried, friends).

Wednesday
May032017

Thoughts I Had: First images from "Murder on the Orient Express"

To Entertainment Weekly the honor of introducing us, or re-introducing us rather, to the characters of Murder on the Orient Express. The Agatha Christie book was first published in 1934, got a very popular Oscar loved film adaptation forty years later and another forty-plus after that it'll be back in movie theaters again with a brand new cast. 

After the jump a mega post about this cover and the adjacent character photos that came with it... 

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar062017

75 days until Michelle Pfeiffer returns to us...

Important dates in the RePfeiffal of 2017...

Michelle Pfeiffer as Ruth Madoff in "Wizard of Lies"

April 29th Michelle Pfeiffer's birthday. She turns 59
May 20th The HBO premiere of Wizard of Lies starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro in a TV movie about the Madoff scandal
June 19th 25th anniversary of Batman Returns (1992)
And Every Saturday ...new episodes of Pfandom
Sept 17th Emmy Night - will she be a nominee for Wizard of Lies? It premieres just before the Emmy eligibility cutoff
Oct 13th Darren Aronofsky's Mother opens in movie theaters starring Michelle Pfeiffer, Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, and Domnhall Gleeson
Nov 22nd The all star remake of Murder on the Orient Express opens in movie theaters starring Michelle Pfeiffer (in the Lauren Bacall role), Kenneth Branagh (in the Albert Finney role), Judi Dench (in the Wendy Hiller role), Daisy Ridley (in the Vanessa Redgrave role), Olivia Colman (in the Rachel Roberts role),  Johnny Depp (in the Richard Widmark role) and Penélope Cruz (in the Ingrid Bergman role). The original was nominated for 6 Oscars in 1974, including two for acting: Bergman and Finney. How will the remake fare with critics and the Academy? 
Dec 11th 25th anniversary of Love Field (1992) which was unfortunately Pfeiffer's last Oscar nomination
Dec 25th Who cares. Santa comes way early in 2017 with the best gift: Bringing La Pfeiffer back 

and...

Michelle's last Oscars appearance. Pictured with Julianne Moore & Kate Winslet backstage which is too much actress bliss for one photo

March 4th, 2018 The 90th Academy Awards. Cross your fingers for Pfeiffer as nominee, or at least presenter. Her last Oscar appearance was singing Jeff Bridges praises for the Best Actor presentation for Crazy Heart (2009)

No Date Yet The Sundance drama Where is Kyra? has no concrete release plans yet :( 

Friday
Sep302016

Cast Begins to Board "Orient Express"

Chris here. Remember what fun we had awhile back fantasy casting Kenneth Branagh's upcoming Murder on the Orient Express remake? Well, now some official names have been added to the cast and it should be just as much of a delight.

The two biggest names come as something of an unexpected Dark Shadows reunion (sorry for the reminder about that Tim Burton misfire): Michelle Pfeiffer and Johnny Depp will be the headliners to Branagh's own Poirot. Pfeiffer becomes the natural successor to Lauren Bacall as Mrs. Hubbard, a casting coup that feels both inspired and accurate. With Beat-Up Little Seagull and Darren Aronofsky's next film which is also probably coming in 2017, we'll be grateful to be seeing quite a bit of her. Depp will be playing Ratchett, the victim of the titular murder.

But they weren't the only names signing up, and the others make for quite an exciting assemblage: Daisy Ridley, Dame Judi Dench, Michael Peña, Derek Jacobi, and Hamilton's Leslie Odom Jr. are all coming on board. That may sound like a lot of names, but this massive cast still has quite a few roles to fill. Stay tuned!

Monday
Jun132016

Who should join Angelina Jolie in the Murder Cast?

Murtada here. Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express is being remade by Kenneth Branagh. He will direct and play the lead part of Belgian detective Hercule Poirot who’s investigating a murder that happens on the famous train as it is making its way across Europe. The novel has been adapted several times, most famously into an Oscar winning film in 1974 by Sidney Lumet and an all star cast, led by Albert Finney as Poirot. Angelina Jolie was announced as Mrs Hubbard, an American loquacious socialite, played in 1974 version by Lauren Bacall. It’s good casting as the part calls a star with lots of presence.

Even though I haven’t read the Christie novel, I have seen the movie version and a 2010 British TV version with Jessica Chastain right before she hit it big. The story lends itself to an all star cast as basically every character gets an intro, one big scene and gets to participate in the finale. And everyone has a secret of course so the parts are juicy and fun and not too taxing on the actors. Hopefully lots of entertaining actors will sign up.

Who would you cast? Our suggestions for some of the characters after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Aug282015

Murder on the Orient Express: Ingrid Bergman steals the show - or does she?

We're near the end of Ingrid Bergman's career so here's the penultimate episode in our retrospective. Happy 100th to the superstar on August 29th. Here's Lynn Lee...

 

By 1974, Ingrid Bergman was a grande dame of film in the twilight of her career, with two Best Actress Oscar wins under her belt, and nothing left to prove.  Perhaps that’s why she deliberately opted for such a small part in the star-studded Murder on the Orient Express, despite director Sidney Lumet’s attempts to coax her into taking a bigger one.  And yet, despite her own efforts to stay out of the spotlight, it found her anyway, with her tiny role as a mousy, middle-aged Swedish missionary netting her an unlikely third Oscar.

We don’t see too many movies like Orient Express these days – A-list extravaganzas where most of the stars end up with little more than glorified cameos but just seem to be in it for fun.  And to be fair, the movie is fun and directed with flair, even as it plays up the absurd theatricality of the whodunit setup – something that doesn’t register as strongly when you’re reading Agatha Christie’s plummy prose.  It’s a bit much at times...

Click to read more ...