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Agatha Christie's Poirot star David Suchet looks unrecognisable in throwback to early career

The actor has appeared in plenty of films and TV shows over the years

Francesca Shillcock

When thinking of Agatha Christie's Poirot – it's hard not to immediately reminisce about David Suchet. The stage and screen actor played the titular role in the TV series for over twenty years.

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David as Hercule Poirot

But the actor isn't just known for his talent for playing the fictional detective. David has received plenty of praise and awards for his many roles in the film, TV and theatre industry – cementing his name as one of the greats of his craft. To celebrate his incredible career, we've taken a look back at some of his earlier roles below – and you won't believe how different he looks!

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The actor played the role for over 20 years

David Suchet's early career

At the age of 16, David had developed a taste for acting and went on to join the National Youth Theatre in London. After a couple of years gaining training and experience, he then went onto study at the prestigious London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. David began his professional career in the theatre in a small playhouse in Berkshire and soon joined the Royal Shakespeare Company.

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David in one of his earlier TV roles

At the beginning of the seventies, David appeared in the TV show Private Eye before going on to star in Oppenheimer, Freud and Thirteen at Dinner and by 1989, he was cast as Hercule Poirot for ITV's series adaptation of Agatha Christie's novels. In his early career, David also appeared in a number of films such as TV movie The Hunchback of Notre Dame and The Missionary alongside Downton Abbey star Maggie Smith and Michael Palin.

David Suchet's later career

Alongside his role as Poirot, David continued to pursue other projects in film, theatre and TV. He appeared in TV shows such as NCS: Manhunt, Dracula and The Way We Live Now (for which he was awarded a Royal Television Society Award). More recently, he's starred in films like All My Sons, The Importance of Being Earnest and American Assassin. In 2002, David was made an OBE. After playing media tycoon Robert Maxwell in the 2007 TV film Maxwell, David was awarded the International Emmy Award for Best Actor.

David Suchet: Poirot

David began playing Poirot in 1989 and continued until the final series in 2013. In November 2011, it was announced that David would complete the cannon of Poirot novels, and the actor expressed his sadness to be saying goodbye to the character, stating it was the end of a "creative journey".

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