Fox Revisiting Bottom of the Sea

Fox 2000 has hired a writer to pen an effects-filled remake of the classic Irwin Allen feature and television series Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, according to Daily Vareity. Justin Haythe, who crafted the screenplay for the upcoming Robert Redford/Helen Mirren project, The Clearing, has been tapped to re-imagine the story.

The original 1961 Voyage feature has an advanced experimental submarine on maneuvers under the North Pole when cosmic events trigger extreme global warming. The sub is then hijacked by Admiral Nelson, who plans to douse the interstellar fire with a nuclear missile. Along the way, the vessel and its crew face giant squid attacks and a host of other difficulties. Producers of the remake tell Variety the new version will play more like Alien underwater, a concept that has already been tackled by genre offerings such as DeepStar Six and Leviathan, both made in 1989.

Hyde Park Ent. president Jon Jashni and his Synthesis Ent. business partner, Kevin Burns, will produce the remake, with Allen’s widow, Sheila, serving as exec producer. Elizabeth Gabler and Rodney Ferrell are overseeing for Fox 2000. Jashni and Burns have an agreement with the Irwin Allen estate to develop other properties based on his creations.

Allen’s Lost in Space has already been forgetably remade for the big screen in recent years. However, Burns and Jashni have plenty of mining options since the late producer left behind a prolific body of work, which includes the TV series Land of the Giants, The Time Tunnel and The Swiss Family Robinson, as well as the features The Poseidon Adventure, The Towering Inferno and The Swarm. Allen also produced the 1956 documentary, The Animal World, which features stop-motion dinosaur animation by Ray Harryhausen, working under his mentor, Willis O’Brien. The dinosaur sequence was recently released on home video as an extra feature on Warner Bros.’ DVD release of the 1957 creature feature, The Black Scorpion, for which O’Brien supervised animation.