Last month, it looked like director Shawn Levy may have walked off of Twentieth Century Fox’s planned remake of 1966’s Fantastic Voyage. The director and the studio were reported to be having a rough time settling on casting choices and Levy had just signed on to develop Fox’s Frankenstein movie, leading to speculation that he had left the former project.
James Cameron, who is producing the film for Fox, has dismissed those speculations, stating to Deadline that Levy is still on the project and that script development is about two thirds done.
Cameron also elaborated a bit on the twist they are giving to the original film’s story of a team of scientists who are shrunk down to microscopic level in order to perform a delicate operation inside the brain of a defector from the Soviet Union.
“I gave him my idea about how this should be turned into a love story and he’s really run with it,” says Cameron, who noted that the script (originally written by Shane Salerno) with its complex premise has to be just right before it can get to the production level. Cameron says it’s about two thirds of the way there in the development process. Much like Titanic the new Voyage has a real emotional core to it, basically dealing with a doctor going through troubled times in his marriage who finds himself injected into his gravely ill wife in order to save her life. Apparently, once he gets to the brain, things really heat up.
That’s an interesting twist to the material, but the husband-wife dynamic does sound vaguely reminiscent of Cameron’s own The Abyss.
And even though Levy is still attached, it appears as if Fantastic Voyage may be awhile before the film finally gets into production. With a sequel to his currently-in-theaters Real Steel is still only being discussed and Frankenstein doesn’t have a finished script either, Levy only has The Three Misfortunes of Geppetto, a prequel to Pinocchio that Fox recently bought as a spec script for Levy to direct as the film that is possibly closest to happening first.