Daniel Craig ‘couldn’t be prouder’ Angela Lansbury stars in Knives Out sequel

Filmmaker Rian Johnson’s long-awaited sequel to Knives Out closed BFI London Film Festival with its European premiere on Sunday.

James Bond star Craig, 54, reprises his role as slick detective Benoit Blanc in the sequel, where his character travels to Greece to peel back the layers of a mystery involving a new cast of colorful suspects.

He told the PA news agency: “I just had so much fun with the first one and we got the chance to do it again, it was a no-brainer.”

The sequel will feature final screen appearances from Murder, She Wrote actress Dame Angela, who died on Tuesday, alongside Sondheim, who created the musical Sweeney Todd and died last November.

Craig told PA: “Those wonderful, wonderful people played very small but really significant parts in our film, I couldn’t be prouder that it happened.”

Speaking about returning to playing detective, he added: “I really liked that he’s an enigma because at the end of the day he’s there to solve the case, the less you know about him the better.

“Every film I’ve ever done has been great, so I’m very lucky, it’s a wonderful, wonderful cast and we had a lot of fun making the film and hopefully that comes through.”

Filmmaker Johnson, whose credits include Star Wars: The Last Jedi, confirmed that the film will feature a tribute to Dame Angela and Sondheim.

He told PA: “We’re adjusting the credits… we’re going to add the dedication to them. They were both my two heroes and they have very small, small but funny cameos.

“But for me it was a big thing to be able to meet them both for 10 minutes and tell them what their work meant to me.”

Johnson explained how he loved murder mysteries, particularly from detective author Agatha Christie, as a child, but wanted to create a film set in modern America.

He told PA: “I grew up loving murder mysteries, I grew up loving Agatha Christie’s books and the films that were based on her books, like the old Death On The Nile and Evil Under The Sun and so for me is It really is a comfort food genre that I have always loved.

“I didn’t really want to put my own twist on it, I just wanted to do a really good version of it, but I wanted to do it in America right now.

“That’s kind of the great innovation of these things for me, it’s just what a whodunnit would look like in today’s world, and we have a lot of fun with that element of that.

“It’s not a message film, but a big part of it is definitely that it’s not afraid to engage with the present and say this is a murder mystery… but it’s not set in the past.

“The characters are going to be talking about things that we’re all talking about right now, but hopefully in a way that’s focused on delivering a really fun ride for the audience.

“Daniel and I, we’re like little kids when we get together to collaborate and I think that sets the tone for the whole cast and I hope it comes across on screen how much fun we’re having,” added he.

Craig appears alongside an all-star ensemble cast including Edward Norton, Janelle Monae, Madelyn Cline, Dave Bautista, Kathryn Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr and Kate Hudson.

Speaking about working with director Johnson, Hudson told PA: “I think if you ever get an opportunity as an actor to work with Rian, it’s just a yes.

“No one is friendlier, more generous, you feel absolutely 1000% safe.

“He knows exactly what he wants and then at the same time he’s so engaging and wants you to collaborate with him and wants you to bring what you’re doing to the character.

“Every part of working with him feels good. And the whole cast, everyone was so fun, we were so lucky.

“I also think that is Rian’s charm. Rian also knows how to play a good time… he knew we all wanted to have fun together and then put it in Greece and forget about it.”

The Almost Famous actress, 43, added that the film “brings people together”.

“We need movies that bring us all into that collective experience that people can walk into and feel the energy of laughter and excitement,” she said.

Guests at the European premiere included Batman star Andy Serkis, singer Grace Jones and activist Malala Yousafzai.

Knives Out, which starred Chris Evans, Ana De Armas and Christopher Plummer, also had its European premiere at the 2019 London Film Festival.

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery hits UK cinemas on November 23 ahead of its Netflix release in December.

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