A Haunting in Venice Producer Explains Why Agatha Christie Adaptation Includes the Supernatural

The producer doesn't want the franchise to become too repetitive.

While mind-bending mysteries are a key component of many Agatha Christie stories, they typically focus on real-world motivations for the crimes committed in these tales, but for the upcoming movie A Haunting in Venice, based on Christie's Hallowe'en Party, the filmmakers put more of an emphasis on the supernatural than the source material. According to producer James Prichard, it was an active choice to lean into these elements, noting that, after Murder on the Orient Express and Death on the Nile, the filmmakers wanted to offer audiences an unexpected shift in tone. A Haunting in Venice hits theaters on September 15th.

"If we are going to continue to make these films, we can't do the same thing over and over," Prichard shared with Total Film, per GamesRadar+, about leaning more into the world of supernatural horror. "A departure at this moment is possibly risky, but it also has the potential to keep it alive, bring in a different audience, and do something interesting that will hopefully surprise and delight."

While director Kenneth Branagh's first two Agatha Christie adaptations were a bit more faithful, the filmmaker seems to be leaning a bit more into the Halloween aspect of the source material's setting, with fans having to wait a month before getting to see if this was a successful change. If the film is a hit, though, it will surely open up the door to make changes to a number of other Christie novels for adaptation.

The film is described, "A Haunting in Venice is set in eerie, post-World War II Venice on All Hallows' Eve and is a terrifying mystery featuring the return of the celebrated sleuth, Hercule Poirot. Now retired and living in self-imposed exile in the world's most glamorous city, Poirot reluctantly attends a séance at a decaying, haunted palazzo. When one of the guests is murdered, the detective is thrust into a sinister world of shadows and secrets."

Reuniting many of the filmmakers behind 2017's Murder on the Orient Express and 2022's Death on the Nile, the film is directed by Kenneth Branagh with a screenplay by Oscar nominee Michael Green based upon Agatha Christie's novel Hallowe'en Party. The producers are Kenneth Branagh, p.g.a., Judy Hofflund, p.g.a., Ridley Scott, and Simon Kinberg, with Louise Killin, James Prichard, and Mark Gordon serving as executive producers. 

The film stars Branagh as famed detective Hercule Poirot and features a brilliant acting ensemble portraying a cast of unforgettable characters, including Kyle Allen, Camille Cottin, Jamie Dornan, Tina Fey, Jude Hill, Ali Khan, Emma Laird, Kelly Reilly, Riccardo Scamarcio, and Michelle Yeoh.

A Haunting in Venice lands in theaters on September 15th.  

Are you looking forward to the new movie? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars!