Even the presence of Sean Connery couldn’t lift the 2003 flick The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen out of the doldrums. Critically pasted at the time — it scored a woeful 17 per cent on international movie site, Rotten Tomatoes — most critics feeling that the film’s creators had strayed too far from the source material: Alan Moore’s series of graphic novels. However, one of the movie’s saving graces was Captain Nemo’s amazing six-wheeler car.
Deigned by production designer and art director Carol Spier, Nemo’s steampunk-inspired car actually started life as a humdrum Land Rover fire tender. The Landie’s chassis was then draped with a fibreglass body embellished with antique gold-looking decorations that took their design cues from the Hindu god Ganesha. The car’s wheels each measure 72cm and, hidden within the arches, are hydraulics enabling the car’s ride height to be adjusted.
Powered by a Rover V8, Nemo’s car was a totally functional bit of movie kit — and featured a fully trimmed interior complete with a complete set of Land Rover gauges. After several years in storage, the car is now showing some signs of wear as well as evidence of running repairs undertaken during filming.
However, Captain Nemo’s Nautilus car remains in full running condition and will go under the hammer at Coys Blenheim Palace auction on July 11. The car’s sale price is estimated to be in the range of £18,000–25,000 (NZ$41,500–57,600).