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David Fincher is Taking Over Disney's 20,000 Leagues Movie

by
May 15, 2010

David Fincher

Wow, I did not see this coming! THR is reporting that Disney is in negotations with David Fincher to direct their 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea movie that McG was attached to for a while before his iteration of the project was canceled late last year. Additionally, they say that screenwriter Scott Z. Burns (The Bourne Ultimatum, The Informant, Contagion) has been hired to write a fresh new take on the classic Jules Verne story about a vengeful scientific genius and his warlike submarine. Apparently Fincher has been developing this idea with Disney production head Sean Bailey after he was hired last year. Is this great news or what?

This is some of the most surprising industry news we've heard in a very long time. This also hits after we learned that Fincher was one of the first directors to ever be given final cut on his films at Sony, which is why we assumed he would stay and work at that studio for a while. THR says that, for the first time in his career, Fincher wanted "to tackle a four-quadrant tentpole movie." McG's version was shelved last year after Dick Cook left Disney, and it says "the dark tone of the McG version was a concern for the new regime." Even more exciting, apparently the 20,000 Leagues that Fincher and Burns are whipping up is "described as being in the vein of Star Wars or The Empire Strikes Back. It will aim to be visually dazzling." Whoa!

Is Fincher about take a step to another level of brilliance? I thought he was already nearing the peak of his career with films like Fight Club and Zodiac, but with The Social Network coming up and 20,000 Leagues, it's like he's trying to step into Steven Spielberg's shoes and give him a run for his money. THR mentions that this won't be Fincher's very next project, he'll likely direct The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo US remake before diving into 20,000 Leagues at Disney. I've been a supporter and fan of Fincher for a long time and he's one of those directors I have complete confidence in, so this is awesome to hear! What do you think?

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  • http://www.cinetalk.tv Shaun
    Fincher is in my list of directors i will love, no matter what they do. One of the last great visionaries in hollywood directing. I just hope he stays on this project.
  • Mathieu
    I'm concerned that Fincher is squandering his talent with remakes - I'd rather he focused on new ideas. And can someone who speaks Business-School-ese translate 'four-quadrant tentpole' into English for me please?!
  • CLAW
    What a jump in talent from McG all the way up to Fincher. I had no interest with this with McG attached but now with Fincher I'm in baby :)
  • Conor
    Four quadarant refers to a movie that is designed to appeal to all "four quadrants" of the moviegoing public, that is: *Young audiences *Adult audiences *Male audiences *Female audiences
  • WHO
    NAVEEN. ANDREWS. FOR. NEEMO. MAKE IT HAPPEN FINCHER @_@
  • WHO
    NEMO, NOT NEEMO, MY BAD.
  • Robbie
    David Fincher is my most favourite director ever, so I say: bring it!
  • Mathieu
    #4 - Thank-you, sir. I hope that also isn't a euphemism for 'bland and generic' - but I trust Fincher one hundred percent, so there's probably nothing to be concerned about.
  • Quanah
    This is great news. Fincher will avoid the often cheese a Disney film slices.
  • a b
    McG's version was too dark, so they got Fincher? Brilliant.
  • Dave Lister, J.M.C.
    Firing McG is always a great move. I will never forgive him for the turd he dropped called Terminator: Salvation. That P.O.S. was D.O.A.
  • [A]
    I didn't see this coming either! I guess it's good news -- Fincher over McG is good news no matter what but the project is what makes me wonder . . . . .
  • http://movies.iconocritic.com peloquin
    I've honestly never been that impressed with Fincher, but I'll take him over McG any day. I have high hopes for The Social Network though so I'll hold off on my judgment until after that. Fight Club and Zodiac were over-rated. I liked Alexander Bulkley's version of the Zodiac killer from 2005 much more than Finchers which was way too long and paced like a snail (tried watching it twice and fell asleep both times).
  • http://www.themoviescene.co.uk Andy
    There is no doubt that it’s great news with Fincher attached to such a great story, I just hope that the powers at B at Disney don’t try to meddle too much with Fincher’s vision when things actually start moving. As for Nemo well Naveen Andrews would be good but I reckon Ramon Tikaram could pull it off as well.
  • tazz
    great choices for Ramon Tikaram and Naveen Andrews for Nemo they both great actors. i think Jimi Mistry could play the role
  • SlashBeast
    Just further proof of Fincher's decline. The guy who made Fight Club, Se7en and Zodiac now make pap like Benjamin Button, a Facebook movie and this.
  • Really?
    You're an idiot Slashbeast. If anything, he's a more versatile director, and not a one trick pony.
  • Candy Castle
    Is David Fincher for real? Didn't see this coming. But please do it after 'the girl with the dragon tattoo'.
  • zubzwank
    David Fincher's last "science fiction" movie was Alien III (I think) which was pretty bad. BUT: 1) It probably wasn't his fault, as he was new to the business of directing major movies and had far from final cut; there was lot of interference: 2) one of the good things about AIII --and there were some--was its gothic atmosphere, which I believe was Fincher's doing in a major way; I can see getting something like that into TLUTS. After all, Nemo is a brooding murderer ruling a dark if amazing kingdom. Even the 50s Disney classic had a taste of that (e.g., suicide pacts); 3) David Fincher is one of our best "dark" directors in a way David Lynch and David Cronenberg once were. I'll go to see his movies for awhile.
  • Glass
    ^ There was gothic atmosphere because it was just a rehash of the original Alien.
  • SlashBeast
    #17 - Really? No, he is a one-trick pony. Every non-thriller film he's ever done is either average or mediocre. He's not versatile, he doesn't have range. He should stick to making thrillers, that's all he's good at.

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