David Suchet: the Irreplaceable Hercule Poirot

To all of you, who study English at our Training Centre Raya, we would like to tell a story about a really good English actor, deeply related to Agatha Christie’s stories, one of the most famous criminal writers in the world.

There is barely a person who has not watched at least one adaptation based on the famous writer’s novels. The plots in Agatha Christie’s novels guarantee you a fascinating action and unforgettable characters. It seems like she created the most popular literary detective as well – the emotional, pedantic, clever, and perceptive Belgian Hercule Poirot.

In 1989, the BBC aired the amazing stories of the small detective with a mustache “Agatha Christie’s Poirot”. Until 2013, when the last episode was released, it was one of the most watched criminal series. The actor David Suchet was chosen for the leading role – what a great decision.

David Suchet’s roots originate from different European countries. His mother was the actress Joan Patricia Jarchee (married name Suchet). His father, Jack Suchet was a well-known obstetrician-gynecologist with Lithuanian-Jewish origins. The future actor was born in London, on the 2nd of May in 1946. When he was only 16, he took part in the National Youth Theater of Great Britain, and after that graduated from LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art). At first, he started a theatre career. In 1976, he was already a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company. He played the roles like Othello, Tybalt, Caliban and many other Shakespearean characters.

His TV career began in 1980 with his first role in Charles Dickens’ classic ‘A Tale of Two Cities’. In 1983, he played the role of a Greek detective in Disney’s comedy “Trenchcoat”. In general, because of his unusual British appearance, David Suchet often gets roles of foreigners. He has played the roles of a Central Asian terrorist, a Russian spy, a French hunter, a Polish priest, as well as Emperor Napoleon in the comedy “Sabotage!” (2000).

David Suchet pays great attention to details, in order to transform into the character, he needs to be. To successfully play the energetic Hercule Poirot, he visited Belgium, read all the character’s descriptions from the novels, and even got the soft accent of the English-speaking Belgians. His acting was extremely successful. He played in 70 episodes which lasted 50 minutes each. The audience was addicted to him. Most of the faithful series’ fans did not even want to hear about another actor playing Poirot. Therefore, it is so difficult for his follower – Kenneth Branagh – to impose another image of the famous detective on the public.

David Suchet has been married for a long time to the actress Sheila Ferris. They also have two kids together.

In 2020, Queen Elizabeth honored him with the title of a knight, because of his drama acting roles and charity work, which he modestly accepted in his typical way.

Author: Iveta Radeva

Training Centre Raya London is a new and fastly developing English Language School specialized in teaching English as a second language. Founded in 2015 we are small enough to provide a personal service, but large enough to have very good facilities and resources for the students to learn English in UK.