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Death On The Nile - What We Know So Far

We hope you've got your passport ready, because Kenneth Branagh is taking us to Egypt. Death on the Nile is a follow up to Branagh's adaptation of the classic whodunit mystery novel Murder on the Orient Express. In addition to directing the film, Branagh will also once again play Hercule Poirot, the mustachioed Belgian detective that launched a thousand Masterpiece Theater specials. But this time, he'll be joined by a new all-star cast.

We've known that a sequel to Murder on the Orient Express was on the way basically since the movie racked up an impressive $352 million at the global box office (via Box Office Mojo). Shortly after that film's 2017 release, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that a sequel was indeed in the works, and that it would be an adaptation of Death on the Nile. Both books were written by legendary mystery novelist Agatha Christie. There are dozens of Hercule Poirot mysteries written by Christie, but Murder on the Orient Express and Death on the Nile have proven to be two of the most popular. Both have been adapted into feature films, TV specials, radio plays, and even video games.

Now that the movie is imminent, we have more details, including a tantalizing trailer. Let's not waste another moment before investigating all the clues we've gathered so far about Death on the Nile.

The release date for Death on the Nile

The release date for Death on the Nile has changed a few times since the film was originally announced. At first, the movie was set to come out in November 2019, but that was quickly changed to December 2019 (via ComingSoon). You don't need the deduction skills of Poirot to know that that didn't end up panning out. The release date was eventually pushed back to October 9, 2020, according to Deadline, but that date didn't stick, either.

As part of Disney's massive movie release calendar shakeup, Death on the Nile — a 20th Century Studios production — got delayed once again. Thankfully, though, it didn't get knocked back as far as the upcoming Avatar and Star Wars films. Per Variety, Disney pushed Death on the Nile's release date to October 23, 2020.

At the moment, it appears that date is meant to represent a theatrical release. There hasn't been word on whether the movie might get a streaming release a la Mulan. If they are set on a theatrical release for Death on the Nile, then there's always the possibility that it will go the way of Tenet and face further delays. But, as of now, we're planning on getting our eyes on Death on the Nile at the end of October.

Death on the Nile has an all-star cast

Murder on the Orient Express was noted for its impressive assemblage of actors, including Oscar winners Penelope Cruz and Judi Dench, multi-Oscar nominees Willem Dafoe and Michelle Pfeiffer, and rising stars like Daisy Ridley and Leslie Odom Jr. Fans of stacked ensemble casts will be overjoyed to know that Death on the Nile is continuing the trend of bringing the heat.

The ensemble for this latest mystery features Wonder Woman herself, Gal Gadot, Call Me By Your Name's Armie Hammer, Bollywood star Ali Fazal, and living acting legend Annette Benning. Also along for the ride are Oscar nominee Sophie Okonedo, famed British comedy duo Jennifer Saunders and Dawn French, and Black Panther scene-stealer Letitia Wright

Rounding out the cast are Sex Education's Emma Mackey, Game of Thrones and The Good Fight's Rose Leslie, comedian Russell Brand, and Tom Bateman, who is reprising his role as Poirot's friend Bouc from the first film.

So now that we know who the players are, what kind of game does Death on the Nile have in store for all these famous faces?

What's the plot of Death on the Nile?

Warning to anyone looking to go into the movie totally blind: some light spoilers follow.

Poor Poirot can't seem to catch a break when it comes to making travel plans. Similar to Murder on the Orient Express, Death on the Nile finds the detective wrapped up in a deadly mystery while trying to get from point A to point B. This time, he's on a luxury Nile cruise when he must solve the murder of a young socialite involved in a tumultuous love triangle.

Presuming the film follows the basic plot of the novel it's based on, the titular death on the Nile is that of Linnet Ridgeway-Doyle (Gadot). At first, it appears that the prime suspect for her murder is her rival in romance, Jacqueline de Bellefort (Mackey). Of course, as Poirot begins his investigation into the socialite's death, he realizes that nothing is quite that simple. The ship's other passengers — including Linnet's husband, Simon Doyle (Hammer), her maid Louise (Leslie), a famous romance novelist (Okonedo) and her daughter (Wright), and a nervy physician (Brand) — reveal themselves to each have secrets of their own. With nowhere to hide from the killer, Poirot must untangle the knotty crime before more passengers end up dead.

The stunning first trailer for Death on the Nile

After years of anticipation, the first trailer for Death on the Nile dropped on August 19, 2020, and it gave us a sumptuous look at the sun-drenched whodunit. The trailer smartly keeps the plot mostly under wraps, instead giving us a montage of scenes from the film with a voiceover from Poirot. The detective menacingly teases us by saying, "I have investigated many crimes but this... has altered the shape of my soul."

The real stars of the trailer are the lush visuals, stunning production design, and incredible costumes. While the intricate plot and thrilling cast of characters may be the driving force behind Death on the Nile, like its predecessor, this film looks like it is going to be a real feast for the eyes. The trailer starts strong with a gorgeous shot of the Pyramids at Giza bathed in a golden sunset and doesn't let up until the final shot of the cast assembled in the ship's glamorous lounge. Fans of 1930s design and costuming are in for a real treat.

Whether we end up seeing it in theaters, or cozied up on our couches at home, we're looking forward to joining Poirot once again when Death on the Nile comes out on October 23.