ITV preps Christie mysteries


ITV has commissioned eight new Agatha Christie films, among them a remake of "Murder on the Orient Express," as part of a renewed output deal with British producer Chorion, which owns rights to the Christie estate.

The eight movies will include four starring David Suchet as legendary Belgian detective Hercule Poirot and four to star "Cranford" actress Julia McKenzie as Miss Marple.

The new shows will be exec produced by Chorion's Phil Clymer.

ITV director of drama Laura Mackie said the franchises have "enduring" appeal for viewers. "There is always an appetite for a really good whodunit," she said. "And these really are the best whodunits on television."