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20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1916)

Captain Nemo has built a fantastic submarine for his mission of revenge. He has traveled over 20,000 leagues in search of Charles Denver - a man who caused the death of Princess Daaker. ... See full summary »



(based on: "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea" by)

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Complete credited cast:
Dan Hanlon ...
Edna Pendleton ...
Curtis Benton ...
Howard Crampton ...
William Welsh ...
Charles Denver (as William Welch)
Lois Alexander ...
Prince Daaker's Daughter as a Child
Wallis Clark ...
Pencroft (as Wallace Clark)


Captain Nemo has built a fantastic submarine for his mission of revenge. He has traveled over 20,000 leagues in search of Charles Denver - a man who caused the death of Princess Daaker. Seeing what he had done, Denver took the daughter to his yacht and sailed away. He abandoned her and a sailor on a mysterious island and has come back after all these years to see if she is still alive and if the nightmares he has will stop. The daughter has been found by five survivors of a Union Army Balloon that crashed near the island. At sea, Professor Aronnax was aboard the ship 'Abraham Lincoln' when Nemo rammed it and threw the Professor, his daughter and two others into the water. Prisoners at first, they are now treated as guests to view the underwater world and to hunt under the waves. Nemo will also tells them about the Nautilus and the revenge that has driven him for all these years. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Release Date:

24 December 1916 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (video)

Sound Mix:


(tinted and toned)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film became famous for its groundbreaking work in actual underwater photography by George M. Williamson and J. Ernest Williamson. See more »


In one scene on the island the balloon survivors are at a table and a black servant appears. He never shows up again and is not rescued at the end of the film with the rest of the survivors. See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening titles announce "The First Submarine Photoplay Ever Filmed". See more »


Version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The hammy acting styles distract, but the pioneering underwater photography is worth a look.
10 March 1999 | by (Pine Grove, California) – See all my reviews

This may have been thrilling in 1916, but today it seems more of a curio. The Williamson brothers invented a camera to take pictures underwater, (the prologue tells us, complete with photos of them) so there's lots of shots of fish swimming, the bottom of the sea, men in diving suits and one battle with an octopus, which was a bit fuzzy. Still, the sense of watching movie history was strong, but don't expect too much in light of more modern techniques. What really bothered me was the hammy acting styles, with lots of arm motions and exaggerated facial features. It's the style that gave silent films a bad name. One who avoided this was Matt Moore, the hero of the film, and the only actor I recognized. Perhaps that is why he was still making movies in the 50's. The film uses plot elements of Verne's "The Mysterious Island" as well as "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea."

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