Alfred Gough and Miles Millar have certainly not been resting on their laurels since their phenomenally successful show Smallville came to an end in 2011. Having written the film I Am Number Four, and penned several episodes of the 2011 series Charlie’s Angels, they have now sold a script to Columbia Pictures that features one of the most enduring characters in literature – Captain Nemo.
As the creation of French author Jules Verne, Captain Nemo made his first appearance in the classic novel ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea’ in 1870. A mysterious and enigmatic character, he is revealed to be the scientific genius son of an Indian Raja and, as such, is also known as Prince Dakkar. Obsessed with marine exploration and discovery, he invents a deep-sea submarine named the Nautilus, and embarks on incredible adventures. A main feature of the character is his extensive loathing of Imperialism – particularly as perpetrated by the British Empire.
Nemo has been portrayed on the big screen numerous times, and many exciting names have filled his shoes – from James Mason, Herbert Lom and Omar Sharif, to Michael Caine and Patrick Stewart. With such an important character in play, Columbia President of Production, Michael De Luca, apparently snapped up the spec from Gough and Millar – recognising that it actually provides a fresh perspective on the legendary Nemo and his antics.
Boarding the project as producers are Joe Roth and Palak Patel – currently riding a sizeable wave of Maleficent box-office good-will. Gough and Millar will remain with their script as executive producers – ensuring that their vision is maintained as far as possible, while bringing to bear their behind-the-scenes talent, as demonstrated with Smallville. Unsurprisingly, a rival Nemo project is in development at Disney – although that will be an adaptation of ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea’, rather than a new interpretation of the Nemo character.
Being in its early stages, there has yet to be any indication as to who may take the helm of Captain Nemo’s story. With Roth and Patel guiding it, however, it certainly won’t be long before we hear all the details – including the casting of what will inevitably be one of the more sought-after roles in recent years.