H.G. Wells’ classic The Island of Dr. Moreau is being turned into a TV series by Gunpowder & Sky and their sci-fi label DUST. The series, called Moreau, reimagines Wells’ tale of man tampering in god’s domain for the 21st century, with X-Men: First Class writer Zack Stentz attached to write the series. That’s all well and good, but will this Island of Dr. Moreau TV series be as bonkers as the Island of Dr. Moreau movie with Marlon Brando? I think not.
Gunpowder & Sky’s sci-fi label DUST are developing an Island of Dr. Moreau TV series called Moreau that will put a modern spin on the H.G. Wells novel. The show “focuses on world-renowned scientist Dr. Jessica Moreau, whose pioneering work in genetic engineering catches the eye of a billionaire backer willing to stop at nothing to reach the next step of human evolution.”
In the Wells book, “Shipwrecked in the south Pacific Ocean, Englishman Edward Prendick awakens aboard a ship where a man named Montgomery and his beastly looking servant were transporting animal cargo. Soon, they arrive on an island and more and more of these bizarre humanlike creatures appear. Prendick senses a sinister secret to the island after he meets with the owner, a one Dr. Moreau.”
The book has been adapted to the screen before, notably in 1932 with Island of Lost Souls starring Charles Laughton and Bela Lugosi, and of course, a 1996 fiasco that starred Marlon Brando and Val Kilmer. Richard Stanley was originally attached to helm that adaptation but was eventually fired and replaced by John Frankenheimer. Pretty much every single thing that could go wrong with a movie still went wrong even after Stanley was fired, and the film was torn apart by critics and flopped at the box office. All of this was chronicled in the documentary Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley’s Island of Dr. Moreau.
Zack Stentz, whose credits include X-Men: First Class, Thor, and more, is attached to write the show. “The double helix wasn’t even a twinkle in Watson & Crick’s eye when H.G. Wells first wrote The Island of Dr. Moreau, but his 1896 novel proved astonishingly prescient about how unlocking the secrets of DNA would open the door to humanity playing God with the natural world in strange and frightening ways,” said Stentz. “And now, in the shadow of the CRISPR revolution, it felt like the perfect time to revisit Moreau and bring it into our own 21st Century world of transgenic animals, designer babies and other scientific advances Wells never could have dreamed of. I’m delighted to be working with Eric, Geoff & the Gunpowder & Sky team to welcome a whole new generation to the good doctor’s terrifying island.”
Geoffrey James Clark, Executive Producer, Gunpowder & Sky, added: “This series gives us a chance to work with Zack, one of the most prolific writers in the business. We couldn’t have genetically engineered a better writer for this project and can’t wait to take sci-fi fans on a wild ride with Zack driving.”
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