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Celebrate the Queen of Crime

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The BFI (British Film Institute) is celebrating everybody’s favourite crime novelist Agatha Christie this weekend with several events and screenings happening at BFI Southbank (bfi.org.uk).

The festival is to celebrate the Grand Dame’s 120th birthday and the 90th anniversary of her first novel, which introduced us to her legendary character Hercule Poirot in The Mysterious Affair at Styles.

Here are five interesting facts about one of the most important crime writers of all time.

• Real name Mary Westmacott

The Mousetrap is the longest running show in the world. It opened on 25 November 1952 and is still running after more than 23,000 performances

• After discovering her husband was having an affair Agatha completely disappeared. She was discovered eleven days later at the Swan Hydropathic Hotel in Harrogate, registered under the name 'Mrs Neele', the name of her husband’s mistress

• Her creation, Hercule Poirot is the only fictional character to have an obituary in The New York Times

• She wasn’t a fan of the tax man. Despite making millions Agatha Christie’s will revealed that she had left only £106,683, after giving most of her money away during her lifetime. In her later years she explained, "I only write one book a year now, which is sufficient to give me a good income. If I wrote more, I'd enlarge the finances of the Inland Revenue who would spend it mostly on idiotic things"

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