EXCLUSIVE: Nautilus, the UK live-action Captain Nemo series commissioned by Disney+ two years ago, is no longer headed to the streamer, Deadline has learned.
The decision is part of Disney’s streaming content removal plan unveiled in May, for which the company is taking an impairment charge of approximately $1.5 billion-$1.8 billion. It followed the February announcement by Disney that it intends to cut $3 billion in non-sports content spend across the company.
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As part of the cost-reduction strategy, Disney’s streaming platforms, particularly flagship Disney+, have been taking a closer look on their programming with a new emphasis on content curation.
As Deadline reported exclusively Saturday, Disney+ also is not going forward with another upcoming original series, the The Spiderwick Chronicles, a U.S. live-action series adaptation of the popular children’s fantasy books.
Over the past couple of months, dozens of original series and specials were taken off Disney+ as well as Hulu, and Disney CEO Bob Iger also announced a pullback in new Marvel and Star Wars shows and movies for Disney+.
Like The Spiderwick Chronicles, which is currently being shopped by lead studios Paramount Television Studios, Nautilus has been shot; it started filming in February 2022 in Australia. Disney+ is working with the production team to find a new home for Nautilus, with meetings and screenings underway.
Nautilus was announced during the 2021 Edinburgh TV Festival along with two other new original UK series for Disney+. No other UK local originals are understood to be impacted by the content cuts.
Disney+’s UK scripted and unscripted programming pipeline includes Culprits, from J Blakeson; Jilly Cooper’s Rivals; A Thousand Blows, from Stephen Graham; Coleen Rooney’s upcoming documentary, In Vogue, from Vogue Studios and Raw; and Shardlake, based on the novels by C. J. Sansom.
The streamer also recently greenlit two new U.K. drama series, Jeff Pope’s Suspect: The Shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes, and thriller Playdate.
Based on the Jules Verne’s classic novel 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Nautilus is a 10-part live-action adventure series about the origin story of Verne’s iconic character, Captain Nemo, and his famous submarine, The Nautilus.
In this retelling, Nemo (Shazad Latif) is an Indian Prince robbed of his birth right and family, a prisoner of the East India Company and a man bent on revenge against the forces which have taken everything from him. But once he sets sail with his ragtag crew on board the awe-inspiring Nautilus, he not only battles with his enemy, he also discovers a magical underwater world.
Also starring are Georgia Flood and Thierry Frémont, with Pacharo Mzembe, Arlo Green, Tyrone Ngatai, Ling Cooper Tang, Andrew Shaw, Ashan Kumar, Céline Menville and Kayden Price rounding out the cast. Nautilus is produced by Xavier Marchand’s Moonriver Studios and Anand Tucker’s Seven Stories.
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