Sometimes you don't get what you signed up for. Or at least that appears to be the case when it comes to Death on the Nile. Murder on the Orient Express was one of those movies that made a lot more money than anyone expected. That box office, combined with the runaway success of Knives Out, meant that audiences are into old school murder mysteries. They don't get much more old school than Death on the Nile, but one would think a movie involving the Nile river would mean shooting in Egypt, but it turns out that isn't the case according to new interviews on Total Film.
"I'm still quite sore about being sold a false bill of goods that we were going to shoot this actually in Egypt," faux-grouches Armie Hammer. "Then it moved to Morocco, and I was like, 'Hey, that's still cool'. And then it moved to Longcross [studios in Surrey], and I was like… 'Wait a second – it's Death On The Nile! We need sunshine!'"
Director Kenneth Branagh talked about bringing the glitz and the glamor of something like Death on the Nile to the big screen but also recreating locations in places like England for the shoot.
"You have to deliver, I think, on these films," muses Branagh over the phone on a windy, wet evening. "We've sort of made a contract with the audience to take them away. And particularly in the world we're living with, a cinematic vacation I think is something that people might really appreciate: escaping to an amazing landscape. We did visit real Egypt, but we also recreated the Temple of Abu Simbel to its 150-ft height. We built an absolutely enormous Karnak Nile steamer. We built a massive water tank for it to sit in and float in, so we could have real water, a real boat, real people, and…" he chuckles, "occasionally, in England, real sunshine."
The state of the movie industry is still a bit of a mess these days, so we don't really know if Death on the Nile is going to make its October release date. At the moment, Disney and 20th Century Studios seem keen to release the movie, but that could very much change within the next couple of days. The state of the box office in October will likely define whether or not we'll see any releases in November or December. So wear your stupid mask, stay home, social distance, and don't be a freaking idiot.
Death on the Nile, directed by Kenneth Branagh, stars Kenneth Branagh, Gal Gadot, Letitia Wright, Armie Hammer, Annette Bening, Ali Fazal, Sophie Okonedo, Tom Bateman, Emma Mackey, Dawn French, Rose Leslie, Jennifer Saunders, and Russell Brand. It is scheduled to be released on October 9th.