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Bryan Singer’s adaptation of Jules Verne’s “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” is officially in motion at 20th Century Fox, as reported Thursday afternoon by Deadline. The movie has a script by Rick Sordelet & Dan Studney, and is slated to start production in the fall. This keeps Singer at Fox, the studio behind the “X-Men” films — with Singer’s latest, “X-Men: Apocalypse,” scheduled for release on May 27.
“I’m incredibly excited to be working with my friends at Fox, with whom I’ve had such a long and fruitful relationship,” Singer said in a statement to Deadline. “Ever since I was a boy and first discovered the 1870 Jules Verne novel, I have dreamt of retelling this classic story. Without revealing too much, it contains not only the original characters of Captain Nemo, Ned Land and Professor Aronnax, but also some new and original characters and Sci Fi plot twists culminating in a timeless adventure for all ages.”
Singer first teased his “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” project via Instagram back in September, when the film was not yet set up at a studio. At the time, Singer made it clear that taking on “20,000 Leagues” doesn’t mean he’s leaving X-Men — a franchise he’s been involved with since the first film, released in 2000 — behind, writing, “Not abandoning the #xmen universe. Very excited about #xmenapocalypse and beyond.”
“20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” has been adapted to film and television multiple times, most notably the 1954 live-action Disney film starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason.