DEADLINE reports that director Bryan Singer will begin filming his adaptation of the classic Jules Verne adventure20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, this fall in a deal signed with 20th Century Fox.
Singer is stepping away from his heroic mutants to work on a new big-screen version of Captain Nemo’s adventures.
The director now has until fall to cast the cult characters from the classic novel, originally published in French in 1870.
The Usual Suspects director has already said that his nautical adventure will see Jules Verne’s classic protagonists — including French Professor Pierre Aronnax, Canadian harpooner Ned Land and the unforgettable Captain Nemo — joined by some new characters who don’t appear in the original tale.
Fox takes the helm of Disney’s abandoned ship
The cast is likely to be an all-star affair — matching the grandeur of this underwater epic — and will be crucial to the project’s success. It’s during this phase that Disney ran into difficulty, causing the studio to abandon its own remake of the odyssey, in the works since 2009. Joseph McGinty Nichol (Terminator Salvation) was signed up as director, with Will Smith and Dwayne Johnson rumored for the cast, before the studio pulled the plug.
In 2012, David Fincher took over as director, with a hefty budget of $200M to get the project back on track. But the director quit after a difference of opinion with Disney over casting.
The studio’s top choices, Brad Pitt and Chris Hemsworth, both refused roles in the blockbuster. Plus, while Fincher was keen to stick closely to the original story by casting a French actor as Pierre Aronnax, Disney rejected the idea, hoping for three internationally known stars in the main roles.
Disney is, however, the studio behind the best-known big-screen adaptation of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. Released in 1954 starring Kirk Douglas, the movie went on to win three Oscars.
Before embarking on deep sea exploration aboard the Nautilus, Bryan Singer’s latest X-Men Movie X-Men: Apocalypse is lined up for release on May 27, 2016.