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Neil LaBute To Direct Agatha Christie Adaptation 'Crooked House' Written By Julian Fellowes

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist March 21, 2011 at 5:23AM

We have to admit, we were a little curious as to why Neil LaBute dropped out on the adaptation of his own short story "Seconds Of Pleasure" for director Mike Figgis, but now it looks like a reason has emerged -- a project written by an Oscar winner and based on a book by one of the most celebrated mystery writers of all time wound up crossing his path.
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We have to admit, we were a little curious as to why Neil LaBute dropped out on the adaptation of his own short story "Seconds Of Pleasure" for director Mike Figgis, but now it looks like a reason has emerged -- a project written by an Oscar winner and based on a book by one of the most celebrated mystery writers of all time wound up crossing his path.

The Independent reports that Neil LaBute is lined up to direct "Crooked House" based on the book by Agatha Christie and adapted by Julian Fellowes, who took home gold for "Gosford Park." Cited by Christie as one of her favorite books that she wrote, the story is told from the perspective of Charles Hayward whose fiance refuses to marry him until the identity of the person who poisoned her grandfather is found.

"I love the period, I love Agatha Christie and I love the idea of reinventing it. It will be exciting to work with a really vivid, contemporary director – he's one of the originals around at the moment," Fellowes said about the project. But he's got to clear up some other work first. He's set to pen the second installment of the critically acclaimed series "Downton Abbey" before focusing on "Crooked House." But the film is gearing up to shoot in London later this year, though no cast has been announced just yet.

And that's not all that's cooking on Fellowes' stove. "Titanic," a mini-series he wrote about the ill-fated voyage, is finally kicking into production this spring, Deadline reports. ABC has picked up the rights to the project in the U.S. and it's slated to air around the centenary of the ship's sinking next year.

As for LaBute, while we haven't loved his films of late, the move to a Christie-based mystery is an exciting one, particularly with Fellowes penning the story. Seems like a pretty devilish pairing and we're eager to see the results.

This article is related to: Films, Neil LaBute, Crooked House, Julian Fellowes


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