20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Captain Nemo has been long gestating in Hollywood, but it looks like the Jules Verne 1870 fantasy novel will finally hit the big screen courtesy of Smallville creators Alfred Gough and Miles Millar.

Simply called Captain Nemo, Columbia Pictures has bought the pair's spec script, with President of production Michael De Luca moving to secure the sale fast.

The film will follow iconic antihero Nemo, a scientific genius who roams the depths of the sea in his submarine The Nautilus, which he built on a desert island.

Sony Pictures and Columbia had no comment about the acquisition. Joe Roth and Palak Patel are producing Captain Nemo. They previously produced Maleficent starring Angelina Jolie and the Alice in Wonderland live-action movie for Disney. They are also currently in production on the sequel to that later film, Through the Looking Glass.

Alfred Gough and Miles Millar will executive produce this new fantasy epic. Their's isn't the only version of the story in play. Disney also has 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea still in development. David Fincher was set to directed, but walked away from the project a number of years ago after he could not come to an agreement with the studio over the budget. There has been no movement on the long dormant project since that time.

Captain Nemo is in the public domain, so any studio is capable of building a franchise around the character and his adventures.

Alfred Gough and Miles Millar previously worked for Sony, writing the Spider-Man 2 sequel under the direction of Sam Raimi. They also collaborated on I Am Number Four and the sequel The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

B. Alan Orange at Movieweb
B. Alan Orange