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Judi Dench and Maggie Smith to check back in for Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Story by Jack Foley

PRODUCTION on The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2 has begun in India, reuniting the original cast and director.

Ol Parker, who adapted the original screenplay, is also returning, having worked on the sequel’s script with director John Madden.

A British box office smash, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel starred Judi Dench (as Evelyn), Maggie Smith (Muriel), Bill Nighy (Douglas), Dev Patel (Sonny), Celia Imrie (Madge), Ronald Pickup (Norman), Penelope Wilton (Jean), Diana Hardcastle (Carol), Tena Desae (Sunaina) and Lillete Dubey (Mrs. Kapoor), all of whom will be checking back in for more drama and romance.

Additional cast making their debut include Richard Gere, David Strathairn and Tamsin Greig.

Blueprint Pictures’ Graham Broadbent and Peter Czernin will produce the film, with Participant’s Jeff Skoll serving as executive producer.

Commenting on the reunion of its cast and the arrival of some new tourists, Participant Media Executive Vice President of Production Jonathan King said: “We’re thrilled to reunite our creative and delightful Marigold Hotel family along with some intriguing new ‘guests’. With John Madden’s direction and Ol Parker’s original screenplay, we look forward to further exploring our characters’ rich stories and triumphs.”

He added: “We believe audiences will be as happy as we are to spend more time at The Marigold, as this remarkable cast continues to demonstrate that life can be an adventure at any age.”

Madden also commented: “This film presented us with an irresistible opportunity: to continue a story we realized we had only just begun. Not to tell the same story again, but to pursue where the lives of these very different characters lead, with an audience which already holds them in great affection.”

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel was released in Spring 2012 to record-breaking business in the UK and US, earning more than $135 million worldwide, along with a host of critical acclaim and accolades including Best Picture nominations from The Hollywood Foreign Press, BAFTA and The Screen Actors Guild (Ensemble Award).

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2 marks the first sequel ever released by Fox Searchlight Pictures.

About the story…

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2 is the expansionist dream of Sonny (Dev Patel), and it’s making more claims on his time than he has available, considering his imminent marriage to the love of his life, Sunaina (Tena Desae).

Sonny has his eye on a promising property now that his first venture, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel for the Elderly and Beautiful, has only a single remaining vacancy – posing a rooming predicament for fresh arrivals Guy (Richard Gere) and Lavinia (Tamsin Greig).

Evelyn and Douglas (Judi Dench and Bill Nighy) have now joined the Jaipur workforce, and are wondering where their regular dates for Chilla pancakes will lead, while Norman and Carol (Ronald Pickup and Diana Hardcastle) are negotiating the tricky waters of an exclusive relationship, as Madge (Celia Imrie) juggles two eligible and very wealthy suitors.

Perhaps the only one who may know the answers is newly installed co-manager of the hotel, Muriel (Maggie Smith), the keeper of everyone’s secrets. As the demands of a traditional Indian wedding threaten to engulf them all, an unexpected way forward presents itself.

Related: View photos of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel l Read our interview with Ronald Pickup

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