Many have wondered what the next big-screen project will be for celebrated filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, and with the fate of his Pacific Rim sequel in limbo it appears that he could be getting set to direct a project that goes small with sci-fi in much the same way that his 2013 giant-robots-and-monsters movie went big with, well … everything.
Del Toro is reportedly in talks to direct a remake of the 1966 sci-fi adventure Fantastic Voyage, which followed a group of scientists who were miniaturized and sent into the body of a comatose scientist in order to save his life.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the remake of Fantastic Voyage would team Del Toro with 20th Century Fox and James Cameron’s production company Lightstorm Entertainment, as well as Batman Begins and Man of Steel screenwriter David Goyer, who penned the script for Del Toro’s Blade II. Goyer is reportedly co-writing the screenplay for the remake with Justin Rhodes (Grassroots).
The original Fantastic Voyage was based on a story penned by Otto Klement and Jerome Bixby that was set in the 19th century, but was updated to a Cold War setting, and had the miniaturized team tasked with saving the life of a Soviet defector who was rendered comatose during an assassination attempt. The film, which was directed by Richard Fleischer (Soylent Green, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea) and starred Stephen Boyd, Raquel Welch, Edmond O’Brien, and Donald Pleasence, won two Academy Awards for its visual effects and art direction, and was nominated for four additional Oscars.
If the plot sounds familiar, that’s because it also inspired the successful 1987 sci-fi comedy Innerspace, about a military aviator (played by Dennis Quaid) who finds himself inside the body of a hapless store clerk (Martin Short) after a miniaturization experiment goes awry. That film also won an Academy Award for its visual effects.
While Fantastic Voyage seems like a perfect fit for Del Toro, it’s worth noting that a remake of Fantastic Voyage has been in the works for more than a decade now, with a long list of directors and stars attached at various points, only to see the project fail to come together. Del Toro’s own history of getting involved with high-profile projects only to end up turning his attention elsewhere should also temper fans’ expectations.
Still, it’s difficult not to be excited any project that would involve collaboration between Del Toro and Cameron.