No one did murder mysteries like Agatha Christie and we love watching her stories adapted on the screen. Some of her stories have been adapted multiple times and Murder on the Orient Express is one of them. We are ready to meet those familiar characters again in a whodunit which changes the climax with each adaptation (gotta keep the suspense alive). Kenneth Branagh dons the director's and Hercule Poirot's hat for this movie. He is known for directing movies like Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit and Thor. We cannot wait to see what he does with this one. And now, for all the newbies, it is time to meet the characters.
The Detective – Hercule Poirot
Perhaps Agatha Christie's most popular character, he is a retired Belgian police officer whose senses are still sharp and he is called on to solve cases from time to time. He often refers to himself in the third person and brilliant with what he does. He has featured in 33 novels and 50 short stories and we will be watching Kenneth Branagh perform this character on screen with the curly mustache. But they will be deviating a bit from the original character by portraying him as someone who is a little younger and more hands-on when it comes to solving the murder.
The Owner – M. Bouc
M. Bouc played by Tom Bateman is the owner of the Orient Express and is like Watson to Hercule Poirot's Sherlock. He mostly provides comic relief but he is also the reason we get to see Poirot explaining his process.
The Doctor – Dr. Arbuthnot
The character name has been changed from the novel but his job essentially remains the same. Dr. Constantine in the novel is the one who helps in determining the time of death and is an integral part of the investigation. Leslie Odom Jr. of Hamilton musical fame will be essaying this role.
The Governess – Mary Debenham
Daisy Ridley on a role when it comes to showing her acting prowess. She plays proper Governess in this one and one of the last Jedi in the Star Wars movie next month. She is one of the immediate suspects of committing the murder because Poirot overheard a conversation between her and Dr. Arbuthnot.
The Gangster – Edward Ratchett
Ratchett fears for his own life and has earned everyone's dislike for his deeds. For Poirot, he is the personification of evil and there are very few who express any grief over his passing away. Johnny Depp will be playing this role and we are very excited to see how that turns out.
The Assistant – Hector McQueen
No gangster is complete without an assistant. It is Josh Gad's Hector who plays the assistant in this one. He is also one of the immediate suspects because of his close proximity to the victim and also with the most probable motive.
The Princess – Princess Dragomiroff
She is considered the ugliest of the lot but is played by the elegant Dame Judi Dench in this version. She brings a lot of grace along with vulnerability to this character. She is also the one who was almost successful in steering Poirot off the investigation.
The Maid – Hildegarde Schmidt
She is the ever loyal maid of the Princess and stands staunchly by her side through the whole investigation. We have seen her in Broadchurch and she is reportedly also playing the role of Queen in the second season of The Crown. This role just goes to show the range of her acting capabilities. She is known to be a very timid character who follows all the Princess's orders.
The Widow – Caroline Hubbard
Caroline Hubbard is known to talk a lot for the sake of interrupting everyone and she cannot stop talking about her daughter above all. She stands out because of her stark Americanness. She is also situated next door to the victim. Michelle Pfeiffer of the Batman Returns fame will be playing this role.
The Missionary – Pilar Estravedos
Penelope Cruz's Pilar is different from the character in the novel. While the novel's character was of Swedish descent, this one is Spanish. She is almost kept outside the ring of suspects because of her constant weeping and timid nature.
The Count – Count Rudolph Adrenyi
The Princess is not the only royalty. The Count and his wife are known to travel the world in luxury and Orient Express is just another trip for them. He is very protective of his wife and has kept her identity under wraps throughout the investigation.
The Countess – Countess Elena Adrenyi
The Countess prefers to keep a very low profile through the investigation. She is known to be very young, beautiful and quite. But as still water runs deep, so does her involvement in the murder.
The Butler – Edward Henry Masterman
He is Mr. Ratchett's butler and he falls in the same zone as Mr. Hector when it comes being a suspect. He is haughty as most Butler's are and his character is not fleshed out too much in the novel.
The Conductor – Pierre Michel
He is the one that people overlook in the beginning until they realize how integral he is to the investigation. Marwan Kenzari of The Mummy fame will be playing this character in the movie.
The Professor – Gerhard Hardman
Although we missed Willem Dafoe in Justice League, he is going to be a part of this one. Even his character has undergone a major transformation from an American Private Detective to a Professor who chooses to remain aloof through the proceedings.
The Salesman – Biniamino Marquez
How dangerous can a car salesman be? You will need to watch the movie to find out. But he certainly is altered from the book and we cannot wait to see how much when we watch the movie.
Are you excited about the movie? You can read more information on the movie here and watch this space for our review of Murder on the Orient Express.