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Milk the Franchise | May 26, 2017

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The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Created by Alan Moore and artist Kevin O’Neill in the late 90s, The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen is a group of Victorian-era public domain literary characters, including Captain Nemo, Allan Quatermain, Dr. Jekyll, Hawley Griffin and the Invisible Man brought together by British Intelligence to face turn-of-the-20th-century steampunk flavored bad guys, including Fu Manchu and Professor Moriarty. Sean Connery starred in the 2003 feature film, loosely based on the first comic novel, which turned out to be his last acting role in front of the camera.

 

The film was besieged by troubles, including co-creator Alan Moore distancing himself from the project and artist Kevin O’Neill openly venting his disappointment. Star Sean Connery was paid $17 million for his role of Allan Quatermain, limiting the budget for other big name actors and special effects. Connery was also openly critical of director Stephen Norrington (Blade), who has not directed since The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen in 2003.  A lawsuit was also filed against 20th Century Fox by Larry Cohen and Martin Poll, claiming they pitched a similar idea to the studio called Cast of Characters. The suit was later settled out of court. 

 

Add to that the comic’s character “The Invisible Man” was modified to “An Invisible Man”, because Fox couldn’t obtain the rights to H.G. Wells The Invisible Man; Fu Manchu was dropped completely from the shooting script and studio execs insisted on adding Tom Sawyer to the film to appeal to American audiences.

 

In 2013, Fox TV announced a pilot for a television series with Michael Green serving as Executive Producer and writer. Showrunner Erwin Stoff has been assigned to the series, should it be picked up. The pilot episode will be broadcast, even if the series is not picked up. It is not clear if creator Alan Moore is involved in this project.

 

Producer John Davis was quoted at the Television Critics Awards in August 2015  “that the reboot would be going back to the roots and making it authentic to what the fanbase was originally excited about.” He also talked about the series being “female-centric.”