Continuing their series of questionable choices, Disney has decided not to move forward with another promising series: Nautilus, the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea prequel focusing on Captain Nemo.
According to Deadline, this is, of course, another part of Disney’s cost-reduction strategy: “The decision is part of Disney’s streaming content removal plan unveiled in May, for which the company is taking an impairment charge of approximately $1.5 billion-$1.8 billion. It followed the February announcement by Disney that it intends to cut $3 billion in non-sports content spend across the company.”
In May, Disney removed a whole pile of series from streaming, including Willow and Y: The Last Man. In July, Disney CEO Bob Iger said the company was going to “pull back” on Marvel and Lucasfilm series.
While a Jules Verne prequel might not immediately seem like the most promising series, Nautilus actually sounded like fun. And then they went and cast Shazad Latif—Star Trek: Discovery’s Ash Tyler (pictured above)—as Captain Nemo, “the enigmatic Indian prince who steals a fantastical submarine from the East India Company and sets sail in search of adventure under the sea.” It’s a perfect, appealing bit of casting for an actor who really deserves a starring role.
Nautilus was supposed to begin filming in Australia in late 2021, but the reports of its demise at Disney don’t say anything about whether or not the show has been shot. It did have a whole cast, including Georgia Flood, Thierry Frémont, Pacharo Mzembe, Arlo Green, Tyrone Ngatai, Ling Cooper Tang, Andrew Shaw, Ashan Kumar, Céline Menville and Kayden Price.
It’s really too bad that their ship seems unlikely to set sail.