Murder in Three Acts
|Murder in Three Acts|
|Directed by||Gary Nelson|
|Country of origin||
|Running time||94 minutes|
|Original release||September 30, 1986|
|Preceded by||Dead Man's Folly|
|Followed by||Appointment with Death|
Murder in Three Acts is a 1986 British-American made-for-television mystery film produced by Warner Bros. Television, featuring Peter Ustinov as Agatha Christie's Belgian detective Hercule Poirot. Directed by Gary Nelson, it co-starred Jonathan Cecil as Hastings, Tony Curtis, and Emma Samms.
The film is based on Christie's book Three Act Tragedy (1934).
Poirot joins his assistant Hastings in Acapulco, Mexico, where Hastings is staying. They go to a party at which the other guests include the writer Janet Crisp, the American actor Charles Cartwright, a clergyman called Babbington, Daisy Eastman and her daughter Egg, Dr Strange, and Ricardo Montoya. Babbington dies of poisoning, and then Strange is poisoned, too. Poirot hunts the murderer.
Changes to the original story
The main change is the relocation of the action from London to Acapulco. In the book, Poirot's assistant is Satterthwaite, replacing Hastings, but in the film Hastings is reinstated in his usual role. Christie's English theatrical actor Sir Charles Cartwright turns into Charles Cartwright, an American movie star.
A 2010 version made for television starring David Suchet as Poirot restored the title Three Act Tragedy as well as again making Sir Charles Cartwright (played by Martin Shaw) a stage actor from Britain.
Cast of the 1986 version
Ustinov as Poirot
- Death on the Nile (1978) – theatrical film
- Evil Under the Sun (1982) – theatrical film
- Thirteen at Dinner (1985) – TV film
- Dead Man's Folly (1986) – TV film
- Murder in Three Acts (1986) – TV film
- Appointment with Death (1988) – theatrical film