Richard Gere joins "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 2"

January 13th, 2014

Richard Gere has joined 'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel' sequel.

The 64-year-old actor has jetted off to India to begin work on the follow-up to 2012's surprise hit comedy alongside an all-star cast including Dame Judi Dench, Dame Maggie Smith, Bill Nighy and Dev Patel.

'Lincoln' star David Strathairn and 'Episodes' actress Tamsin Greig will also be making their debut alongside Gere in the movie, which sees Patel's character Sonny and hotel co-manager Muriel (Smith) planning to expand their business at the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel for the Elderly and Beautiful, while Sonny gears up for his impending wedding.

'Shakespeare in Love' filmmaker John Madden has returned to direct, with Blueprint Pictures' Graham Broadbent and Peter Czernin committed to produce alongside Participant's Jeff Skoll.

Gere will play new arrival Guy, who fights for his right to a room with fellow newcomer Lavinia, played by Greig.

Madden said: ''This film presented us with an irresistible opportunity: to continue a story we realised 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,'' said Madden.

Broadbent commented: ''What are the odds of being able to re-assemble this extraordinary group of actors and filmmakers, let alone to add to their number? We found a worldwide audience we never dreamed of for the first, and we feel very lucky to have the chance now to bring them this companion film.''