Agatha Christie on the Big and Small Screen
Even though Dame Agatha may not have enjoyed adaptations of her mysteries, audiences have been loving them for decades
- By Daniel Eagan
- Smithsonian.com, May 16, 2011
(Mirrorpix / Courtesy Everett Collection )
When Joan Hickson appeared in Christie’s 1945 stage version of Appointment With Death, Dame Agatha wrote the actress a note: “I hope you will play my dear Miss Marple.” It took several decades, but starting in 1984 Hickson starred as the elderly detective in a dozen made-for-TV movies produced by the BBC. Hickson retired from the screen in 1993 after an acting career that stretched back to1927. Christie’s 1962 novel about a movie star who is the target of a poisoning had been filmed before as The Mirror Crack’d (1980), with Angela Lansbury as Marple. ITV Studios produced a version in 2010 starring Julia McKenzie, and Walt Disney Pictures has plans for Jennifer Garner to star as a "young" Miss Marple.