Last March we reported that director Neil Labute signed on to helm the first big-screen adaptation of Agatha Christie’s family-drama/murder-mystery Crooked House. Now it seems Tim Rose Price, whose last screen credit is 1997’s Serpent’s Kiss, will be joining Julian Fellowes, who co-wrote the critically reviled The Tourist, in adapting the thick tome which centers on a intensely wealthy family and the murder of a millionaire in the midst of their massive mansion – which is presumably crooked. While the investigating detective makes his way through three generations of possible suspects, he must also determine who might be next.
Like much of Christie’s work, Crooked features a bevy of characters, and LaBute has already begun filling out the expansive cast. So far Julie Andrews, Gemma Arterton, Matthew Goode and Gabriel Byrne have signed on. No word yet on what roles they’ve taken on. Crooked House, which is has a projected budget of roughly $20 million, is set to shoot this summer in the United Kingdom. [Variety]
Now, Neil Labute’s last venture to theaters was the financially successful but critically panned Death a Funeral, which was a blunt American remake of Frank Oz‘s biting 2007 comedy. Before that was the roundly disappointing, racially charged drama Lakeview Terrace, and prior to that was the box office bomb The Wicker Man. While LaBute’s plays have proved controversial and intriguing, his films have repeatedly fallen flat and lacked luster. With this in mind, I have little hope for this Christie adaptation.
What say you? Are you a fan of LaBute’s recent film work? Does Crooked House interest you? What do you make of the cast?