Filming of a remake of Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express is due to start in Malta in the first quarter of next year, with Johnny Depp in the leading role, Tourism Minister Edward Zammit Lewis said in parliament during question time this evening.

He said that the film will see €8 million ploughed in the Maltese economy and attract some 400 film crew to the island.

Specialist media reported earlier this month that Penelope Cruz has joined a growing and powerful ensemble cast that now also includes Michelle Pfeiffer, Daisy Ridley, Michael Pena, Judi Dench and Josh Gad along with Kenneth Branagh who is starring as detective Hercule Poirot.

Agatha Christie’s novel was published in 1934 and is based on a murder on board the famous train.

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