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Marvel's 'Sub-Mariner' Surfacing at Universal

12 Jun, 2001 By: Hive News

Universal Pictures is negotiating feature film rights to the Marvel comic book property "The Sub-Mariner."

Marvel Studios president Avi Arad will produce the movie with former studio production president Kevin Misher. The project has not been scripted yet.

Arad is also developing the comic book-inspired movie The Hulk for Universal. Ang Lee will direct The Hulk and Gale Anne Hurd will produce.

Believed to have first appeared in 1939, "Sub-Mariner" was one of the first comic books and Marvel's first superhero. The story of "Sub-Mariner" was expanded and reprinted in Marvel Comics No. 1 in 1941.

The story follows the adventures of Prince Namor, a half-man/half-amphibian creature from Atlantis. A troubled rebel with a short temper, he has helped the human race and fought against it when humankind polluted his underwater kingdom with waste.

"This is one of Marvel's biggest franchises because it deals with a world that has not yet been explored in film -- the undersea -- and that is absolutely the next frontier," Arad said. "Even though it was first published in 1941, 'Sub-Mariner' has modern-day implications because if you look at the undersea and what's happening there, you have to address such issues as Exxon Valdez and the oil spill, undersea bomb testing, pollution and global warming.

"The ocean is a source of food, medicine, energy and scientific study, so we are dealing here with issues that are at the forefront of today's society. This project is a very real story told through the eyes of someone who has to not only understand humans but has to protect his own people."

Misher, who resigned this year from Universal's production ranks after five years, says the Reporter, has formed his own still-unnamed studio-based film production company. He is a producer on the studio's The Scorpion King.

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