As is the case so often in Hollywood, two studios are developing rival films of the same subject, but since the subject is Agatha Christie, can we all agree that this is totally okay and both movies should absolutely be made? The Hollywood Reporter reports that both Paramount and Sony are developing biopics of Christie, with Sony taking a more traditional approach to the writer’s life and Paramount focusing on Christie’s eleven-day disappearance in 1926. The two movies sound different enough that I would be interested in seeing both.
The catch is that the Christie estate is notoriously picky—it took seven years for Fox to get their approval to remake Murder on the Orient Express—and both studios will have to get the estate to sign off on their pitches. Sony shouldn’t have too hard a time since making Christie a “proto-feminist” Jazz Age heroine is a flattering portrait, but Paramount might have an uphill climb. Christie herself rarely spoke about her jaunt to nowhere, and I could see her surviving family not wanting anything too scandalous made of it.
But the studios persevere, and are already throwing out wish list casting ideas. Sony would like Alicia Vikander to portray Christie, while Paramount favors Emma Stone—I could be very into Emma Stone playing Agatha Christie. You know who else I could get behind? Anna Kendrick. How is her name not in this discussion? If you told me you’re looking to cast a spunky, murder-obsessed writer in the 1920s, she would be the first person I’d think of. Kendrick has such a throwback charm to her—she reminds me of Myrna Loy. I don’t understand how anyone meets her and isn’t instantly trying to cast her as the spunky heroine of a period piece.