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Angela Lansbury relieved that NBC's planned remake of 'Murder, She Wrote' is not going ahead

British actress and singer Dame Angela Lansbury is photographed on stage at the Gielgud Theatre in central London, as she returns to the West End this spring for the first time in nearly 40 years, with the play, Blithe Spirit, by Noel Coward, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014. Lansbury reunites with director Michael Blakemore to reprise her role as Madame Arcati. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP)

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British actress and singer Dame Angela Lansbury is photographed on stage at the Gielgud Theatre in central London, as she returns to the West End this spring for the first time in nearly 40 years, with the play, Blithe Spirit, by Noel Coward, Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014. Lansbury reunites with director Michael Blakemore to reprise her role as Madame Arcati. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP)

LONDON - Angela Lansbury says she's relieved that a planned remake of her classic whodunit series "Murder, She Wrote" has been cancelled.

Lansbury had been critical of NBC's idea of a reboot starring Octavia Spencer. The entertainment website Deadline.com reported this week that NBC was not going ahead with the show.

Lansbury said Thursday she thought the remake was a bad idea from the start.

"I couldn't believe that they would even consider doing such a thing," Lansbury told The Associated Press.

"I think it was an awful mistake and it was a terrible disservice" to Spencer, she said. "I have too much admiration for her to saddle her with the awful responsibility of having to bring that title into a different venue."

Lansbury spent 12 years until 1996 playing small-town sleuth Jessica Fletcher in the series.

The 88-year-old actress is about to perform in London's West End for the first time in almost 40 years, as the medium Madame Arcati in Noel Coward's "Blithe Spirit."

Lansbury won a Tony Award for the role on Broadway.

Last month the actress, who was born in London and moved to the United States in her teens, was made a dame — the female equivalent of a knight — by Queen Elizabeth II.

She said she was pleased to be performing at London's Gielgud Theatre, where her mother, actress Moyna Macgill, made her stage debut in 1918.

"She was a lovely actress," Lansbury said. "I get all my talent from her."

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