After struggling through an early development process, it looks as though Disney’s reimagining of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, now called Captain Nemo, is back. The film was originally set to be directed by David Fincher. However, disagreements over the film’s budget and casting choice forced the two to part ways. As a result, the film was put on a production halt until a director could be found.
So after being stalled for the better part of three years, it seems that Disney has found a new director to be at the helm. According to a new report, James Mangold (Walk The Line, The Wolverine) has signed on to be the director of Captain Nemo. More on the story below.
The Hollywood Reporter doesn’t mention when the film is expected to shoot, but the fact that Disney has signed Mangold to be its director says they are still very invested in the project. Just to be clear, this isn’t the same as the 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea film that is being directed by Bryan Singer over at 20th Century Fox.
Sebastian Gutierrez will be improving on the film’s latest draft that has already gone through the hands of screenwriters Andrew Kevin Walker and Steven Zallian. Deadline says the script for Captain Nemo will be a “true origins story” and that it is different from the source material, which means there won’t be any overlap of stories between the two films.
Disagreements over who should be cast also resulted in a split between Fincher and Disney. Previous reports said that Fincher was courting Brad Pitt and Channing Tatum. However, Pitt never signed on, and the deal for Tatum simply faded away.
Mangold’s other credits include Girl, Interrupted, 3:10 to Yuma, and Knight and Day. He will direct The Wolverine 3, which is in the early pre-production process. While it is not confirmed, it’s safe to say that once Mangold has finished his press tour for The Wolverine 3, he will jump right into Captain Nemo. But without a start date or even a release date, there is nothing to confirm that he will do such a thing.
While Fincher’s unique directing and filmmaking style would have been interesting to see in a Disney film, Mangold is a fantastic choice as his film credits will prove and a fine replacement for Fincher. The first time that Disney adapted the Jules Verne novel was back in 1954. That film adaptation starred Kirk Douglas, James Mason, and Paul Lukas, with Mason playing the role of Captain Nemo.
[Source: The Hollywood Reporter | Deadline]