Friday, January 9, 2009

Another 20,000 Leagues

Not content to get the geek world in a tizz about his upcoming Terminator Salvation, director McG is now taking on 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Captain Nemo -- a prequel to Jules Verne's famous novel about the misanthropic captain of the piratic submarine Nautilus.

The novel was one of the first to be adapted to film -- as a short by Georges Méliès in 1907 under the title 20000 lieues sous les mers, and then full-length in 1916 by Stuart Paton.

Of course, apart from the Nautilus itself, one of the most famous things about the story -- particularly cinematic versions -- is this scene (here taken from an early illustrated version of the novel):

One wonders whether McG will be featuring some such cephalopoidal character in his prequel, which, as scripted by Bill Marsilli (Deja Vu), is an origin story, no doubt depicting the development of Nemo's rather negative attitudes toward humanity and the creation of his dreaded warship.

The prequel is being produced by McG for Disney, who of course were responsible for the famous and memorable 1954 version, starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea was the first live-action film made by the Disney Studios. It became the second-highest grossing film of its year and won three Oscars.

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