Oscar winner Michelle Yeoh leads the star-studded cast in the new trailer for Kenneth Branagh‘s “A Haunting in Venice.”
The murder mystery, which will release on Sept. 15, is based on Agatha Christie’s 1969 novel “Hallowe’en Party.” The film also stars Tina Fey, Jude Hill, Kelly Reilly and Jamie Dornan, with Branagh reprising his role as Hercule Poirot from “Death on the Nile” and “Murder on the Orient Express.”
“It’s a supernatural world where the normal rules do not apply,” Branagh told Variety. “Murders and ghosts are irresistible to a man with that mustache and that nose for sniffing other culprits.”
Set in a post-World War II Venice on All Hallows’ Eve, the film follows another mystery featuring the celebrated sleuth Poirot as he reluctantly attends a séance at a haunted palazzo. After one of the guests is murdered, the former detective must once again find out who did it.
Despite the supernatural aspect, Branagh said Poirot’s loss of faith is at the center of the film. “He has to face his ghosts via a story that is making him try to understand whether there is something on the other side,” he said.
Yeoh plays the medium running the evening. Branagh said her character “has to have a sense of showmanship and gravity. She has to convince our audience that she’s capable of speaking to people on the other side, or at least is very convincing about that. We were so excited when Michelle came on board.”
Tina Fey plays Ariadne Oliver, a writer and Poirot’s friend. “She is much-loved in the Agatha Christie canon,” Branagh said. “”She is somebody who gives as good as she gets, and to get that sharpness, mental agility and cheekiness of Tina was a great quality.”
The film also reunites Branagh with his “Belfast” stars Jamie Dornan and Jude Hill, who once again play father and son. “It was great to take advantage of that rapport, camaraderie and history that they now had,” Branagh said. “It was super helpful for that impact of friendship and familiarity with me, and it had a positive impact on the ensemble. They made it an easier process for everybody else.”
Unlike “Murder on the Orient Express” and “Death on the Nile,” this marks the first time “Hallowe’en Party” has been adapted for the big screen. It was previously adapted for TV and radio. Branagh said he was excited to not be in the comparison game and have a sense of newness.
“Here, even those who know the novel, are going to see how brilliantly our screenwriter Michael Green has transposed this English country house mystery against the mysterious Venetian setting,” he said.
Watch the trailer below.