BBC One mines Agatha Christie novels for seven more TV dramas

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image captionAgatha Christie wrote 66 detective novels and 14 short story collections

Agatha Christie is set to loom even larger in the British TV schedules after BBC One agreed to show seven new adaptations of her classic mysteries.

The books to be filmed over the next four years include Ordeal By Innocence and Death Comes As The End.

Another, The Witness For The Prosecution, has previously been announced - taking the BBC's total of forthcoming Christie dramas to eight.

The commissions follow the long-running and much-loved Miss Marple and Poirot.

They also come on the back of the TV version of her thriller And Then There Were None, which was shown last Christmas.

And David Walliams and Jessica Raine starred in Partners in Crime, based on Christie's Tommy and Tuppence detective novels, on BBC One last year.

Of the seven newly announced adaptations, three titles have been revealed:

  • Ordeal By Innocence, in which a son is posthumously pardoned of murdering his mother - meaning another member of the family must be guilty
  • Death Comes As The End, set in Ancient Egypt, in which a young woman suspects her priest father may be tied up in the death of a concubine
  • The ABC Murders, about a serial killer working his way through the alphabet in 1930s Britain, tracked (in the book at least) by Hercule Poirot

Meanwhile, The Witness For The Prosecution will be a two-part dramatisation of the 1925 short story of the same name, starring Toby Jones, Andrea Riseborough and Kim Cattrall.

The Witness For The Prosecution was made into an Oscar-nominated film featuring Marlene Dietrich and Charles Laughton in 1957, and there have recently been reports that Ben Affleck will direct and star in a new big screen version.

Sarah Phelps, who wrote And Then There Were None for TV, has also adapted The Witness For The Prosecution for the BBC.

Hilary Strong, chief executive of Agatha Christie Limited, which looks after the author's estate, said Phelps had brought a "new way of interpreting Christie for a modern audience".

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