There’s been rumblings about a new version of the 1870 Jules Verne novel, filmed several times though most famously in the 1954 Disney version starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason, for some time. At one point Disney were ready to do it, and – would you believe it – David Fincher, a big fan of the book, was interested, but studio and director could not see eye to eye. I reckon that Fincher probably wanted to stick to the book, while Disney wanted a film closer to the 1954 movie. They parted ways, but it wasn’t long before Bryan Singer, also a fan of the novel, said he wanted to make a film of it, and September 17th last year he announced on Instagram:
“It’s my 50th birthday (ouch), and I just put the finishing touches on the script for my next film. A story I’ve wanted to retell since childhood. I promise this will be an epic and emotional adventure for all ages! An adventure very dear to my heart. Not abandoning the #xmen universe. Very excited about #xmenapocalypse and beyond. #julesverne #20000leaguesunderthesea #nemo”.
Now, it seems that Singer’s dreams can be fulfilled as Fox has just picked up the project. What with all of his X-Men films for the studio having hit big, X-Men: Days of Future Past having been a particularly huge success with $748 million in worldwide box office, and the upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse, which opens May 27, looking likely to be very popular too, Fox can probably afford to indulge Singer somewhat, though the story certainly has the potential to be another hit. The 1954 remains a classic adventure movie, though I hope the new one will have a somewhat more sympathetic hero than the brash, violent vulgarian played by Douglas in the older movie.