Prince Namor The Sub-Mariner is one of the Marvel characters to still have their movie rights held under option to a movie studio, in this case Universal, and not be part of the ‘crossover club’ sheltering under the Marvel Pictures roof. That disqualifies him from appearing in the Avengers film in any way, of course, but the ongoing appetite for Marvel movies means Universal have been keeping their Namor picture in development.
Currently attached as a director, it would seem, is Johnathan Mostow. His entry to the action genre was ‘bad-town’ thriller Breakdown, a film I never much cared for I’m afraid but which definitely put a rocket up Mostow’s career. He later directed the third, and worst, Terminator film and has the intriguing-looking Surrogates coming very soon. It was doing publicity for this one that he was collared by Collider and squeezed for comments on Namor.
On camera, Mostow said very little. Off camera – though, it would seem, still on record – he managed to give a pretty clear indication of where the project stood. Collider’s Frosty couldn’t quote precisely, but did offer this paraphrase:
The other thing he told me was that the project was in active development. He said the big hang-up is getting the script right and they haven’t cracked it yet. He said making a great super-hero movie is really tough and without the right script it’s impossible. While I’d love to see a movie based on Sub-Mariner, it was refreshing to hear him talk so much about the ensuring the script’s quality before they can make it.
Of course, the overwhelming majority of super-hero movies have gone into production without “the right script” and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it happen again here if the timing, money, stars and need for a tentpole all line up in Universal’s sightline.
As far as I know, Namor doesn’t have any particularly great storylines or a wonderful rogue’s gallery busting with colourful antagonists. Can any of you fill me in on what a first-time Namor picture is likely to be about? All I really know about the soggy fella is that Marvel have called him “their first mutant”.