EXCLUSIVE: Armie Hammer has been set as a male lead in Death on the Nile, 20th Century Fox’s follow-up to last year’s successful Agatha Christie adaptation Murder on the Orient Express. Hammer, next up in the December release of Focus Features’ Ruth Bader Ginsberg biopic On the Basis of Sex with Felicity Jones, now joins Gal Gadot in Nile as Deadline scooped last week.
Fox is eyeing a mid-2019 production start and already has set a December 20, 2019, release date for Death on the Nile, which Christie published in 1937. Kenneth Branagh returns to direct and star as master detective Hercule Poirot, and Orient Express scribe Michael Green is back to adapt. Judy Hofflund, Simon Kinberg, Ridley Scott, Kevin Walsh and Mark Gordon are producing.
The book’s plot centers on Poirot investigating a murder during a luxurious cruise on the Nile River that he just happens to be on. But just as he identifies a motley collection of would-be killers, several of the suspects also meet their demise, which only deepens the mystery.
Fox’s Murder on the Orient Express, released in November 2017, grossed $352.8 million worldwide. Its killer ensemble included Penelope Cruz, Daisy Ridley, Johnny Depp, Judi Dench, Olivia Colman, Josh Gad, Willem Dafoe and Leslie Odom Jr among others.
Hammer, who recently appeared in Boots Riley’s Sorry to Bother You, also stars in Hotel Mumbai due out early next year, along with Annapurna’s new Babak Anvari’s movie. He also just wrapped his Broadway debut Straight White Men.
Hammer is repped by WME and Sloane, Offer, Weber and Dern.