Dr. Julien Sauniere gets into trouble with Nazis in the comic book, Rex Mundi
Rex Mundi is set in an alternate history where Martin Luther was assassinated, the Reformation never took place, and the Catholic Church still reigns supreme. The comics take place in the 1930’s, in a world where the Inquisition still runs rampant, Europe is ruled by monarchs, but magic manages to exist.
Johnny Depp’s ‘Rex Mundi’ Has Script, Needs Director
by Elisabeth Rappe
It’s been a while since we heard anything about Johnny Depp’s second foray into the world of comic book adaptation, otherwise known as Rex Mundi. Back in 2006, Depp purchased the rights to Arvid Nelson’s Dark Horse series under his Infinitum Nihil banner, with the intention to star as Dr. Julien Sauniere.
To refresh your memory, Rex Mundi is set in an alternate history where Martin Luther was assassinated, the Reformation never took place, and the Catholic Church still reigns supreme. The comics take place in the 1930’s, in a world where the Inquisition still runs rampant, Europe is ruled by monarchs, but magic manages to exist. Into this walks Dr. Sauniere, who finds himself investigating the disappearance of a medieval scroll, and a trail of horrific ritual murders. You can find out more on its official site, if you’re interested. Depp was drawn to the project not because he’s a comic reader, but because he’s keenly interested in the Templar Knights, and “loves that kind of research” according to Barry Levine, who’s co-producing.
According to MTV, Rex now has a script, penned by Jim Uhls, and is looking for a director. Depp has been right in the thick of all the decision making, says his co-producer Barry Levine. “The second draft is now coming in from Jim, and Warner Bros. is pretty excited about it. They came up with a couple of names for directors, so now we just need Johnny to look at the list. It all begins and ends with Johnny. He’s got to be happy with the script, and he gave his notes, so we’ll see what happens next.”
As the original story dealt with a now predictable search for the Holy Grail and descendant of Jesus, it’s been changed around a bit. (Damn you, DaVinci Code!) With that worrying development, it’s difficult to say how this could end up — it all hinges on who they hire to direct, and if the story can hold up. The world Nelson has created could be really brilliant on screen. But I fear another From Hell or The Ninth Gate.
Synopsis: Rex Mundi is set in Paris, 1933, but not the Paris of our world. For a number of reasons, foremost the assassination of Martin Luther in 1521, this Europe is still in the dark ages. A handful of aristocrats hold all the power, and the church maintains a permanent Inquisition with all the license of the Gestapo in Nazi Europe. The rites and rituals of spell-casting are steeped in the occult, based on Judeo-Christian mysticism and cabala.