Adrian Lester goes ‘20,000 Leagues Under The Sea’

❉ A brand-new full-cast audio production of the classic Jules Verne adventure novel from Audible.

Adapted by Tony Lee, directed and produced by Barnaby Eaton-Jones and starring Adrian Lester as Captain Nemo, this Audible Original drama voyages across the seas on board the USS Abraham Lincoln in pursuit of a mysterious monster that has been terrifying unsuspecting ships, in an expedition to hunt this creature down before more people are injured or killed.

Amongst the crew are Professor Pierre Aronnax (Terry Molloy), who wants to be the first person to identify the creature, believing it to be nothing more than an oversized Narwhal. He’s joined by Ned Land (Clive Mantle), a Canadian harpoonist, believed to be the best in the world.

Brought onto the USS Abraham Lincoln to kill the creature, Ned has a secret – his love was on a previous ship attacked by the monster (as was he) and died deep in the bowels of the ship, and he wants revenge.

Also on board is Constance Boyd (Carla Mendonca), an agent for the fledgling and secret Office of US Naval Intelligence, sent on her mission by J.D. Hobson (Michael Brandon) and Robert Locke (Barnaby Eaton-Jones).

After a long search, the ship -driven onwards by Captain Farragut (Ben Perkins) finally encounters the beast, but during the attack our three crew members are thrown into the water.

As they cling on for life to their surprise they discover the monster to be an advanced technologic masterpiece, the Nautilus, a submarine unknown to man, commanded by Captain Nemo, played by Adrian Lester OBE (The Day After TomorrowPrimary ColoursHustle).

An enigma, a man without a nation, who’s declared war on mankind by attacking ships that cross his path, our story truly begins when we meet Nemo and discover he’s not the monster that he’s made out to be.

Tony Lee (Writer):

When Barnaby asked me if I was interested in adapting Jules Verne, I never realised how much research I’d be taking on! From differences in translations to additions from earlier works, I did my best to create an adaptation that has a loyalty to all variations of the book, as well as the character of Nemo himself. 

It was an utter joy to write – and both Barnaby and my script-editor at Audible, Linda Nagle made me sound way better than I do!”

Barnaby Eaton-Jones (Producer/Director):

It was a real joy to turn Tony Lee’s brilliant adaptation of Jules Vernes dense text into something that honours the book’s sometimes educational tone but also whips up the action and adventure that is in there too. There’s something deliciously enigmatic about Captain Nemo in this novel, and Adrian Lester gives him that perfect amount of detached air but with the cracks in the cool veneer showing more and more as the story continues.

Audible used this as a ‘test’ run for a full-cast recording remotely and I was chuffed and humbled to showcase how it could be done successfully. Recording remotely is not a new thing for me, due to productions where some of the actor’s schedules haven’t married up, and it’s actually a way of working that requires more direction in the edit – where you are melding the performances together after discussing how you want scenes and characters to flow during each section.”

Cast, in alphabetical order; Gary Andrews, Michael Brandon, Sean Connolly, Barnaby Eaton-Jones, Adrian Lester, Clive Mantle, Carla Mendonca, Terry Molloy, Ben Perkins, Montserrat Roig, Andrew James Spooner.  Produced and directed by Barnaby Eaton-Jones. Sound design by Joseph Fox. Original score by Abigail Fox. Adapted by Tony Lee.

❉ ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea’ is an Audible Original starring Adrian Lester; adapted by Tony Lee, directed and produced by Barnaby Eaton-Jones. Available here: 

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