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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 July, 2004, 15:37 GMT 16:37 UK
Agatha Christie tops crime poll
Sir Peter Ustinov in Death on the Nile
Sir Peter played Belgian detective Hercule Poirot in five films
Detective author Agatha Christie has come top of a poll to find Britain's favourite crime writer.

Christie, who died in 1976, created the fictional detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple. She had sold more than two billion novels around the world.

Classics titles, including Death on the Nile and Evil Under the Sun, spawned a host of TV and film adaptations.

Second in the poll was Sherlock Holmes creator, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, just ahead of US author Patricia Cornwell.

Some 1500 people were quizzed for the survey, commissioned to celebrate the launch of last year's feature film release of The Singing Detective starring Robert Downey Jr.

John Thaw
The late John Thaw played the popular Inspector Morse

Those surveyed were also asked to pick their favourite moment featuring a screen detective. They chose Brad Pitt's discovery of his screen wife's severed head in a cardboard box, from the David Fincher movie Seven.

Close behind was the moment Inspector Morse revealed his first name as Endeavour.

The irascible Oxford detective, created by Colin Dexter and immortalised on screen by the late John Thaw, was also named the nation's favourite fictional detective, beating Colombo and Sherlock Holmes.

Last week ITV announced plans to resurrect the long-running drama series Inspector Morse, focusing on the inspector's trusted sidekick, Sergeant Lewis - as played by Kevin Whately.

ITV set to bring back TV's Morse
15 Jul 04  |  Entertainment
Conan Doyle sale nears 1m mark
19 May 04  |  Entertainment
Thaw boosts TV exports
20 Mar 03  |  Entertainment

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