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20000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Drama, Family  |  23 December 1954 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 20,577 users  
Reviews: 106 user | 65 critic

A ship sent to investigate a wave of mysterious sinkings encounters the advanced submarine, the Nautilus, commanded by Captain Nemo.



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Title: 20000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954)

20000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
First Mate of the Nautilus
John Howard
J.M. Kerrigan ...
Old Billy
Percy Helton ...
Coach Driver
Ted Cooper ...
Mate on 'Lincoln'


The oceans during the late 1860-92s are no longer safe; many ships have been lost. Sailors have returned to port with stories of a vicious narwhal (a giant whale with a long horn) which sinks their ships. A naturalist, Professor (Pierre) Aronnax, his assistant, Conseil, and a professional whaler, Ned Land, join an US expedition which attempts to unravel the mystery. Written by Murray Chapman <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The mightiest motion picture of them all! See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

23 December 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jules Verne's 20000 Leagues Under the Sea  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$5,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This was Walt Disney's first feature using the new CinemaScope process, as well as one of the first productions outside of 20th Century-Fox use that anamorphic wide screen process. At the time, Bausch & Lomb had not been able to manufacture enough anamorphic lenses to meet the demand, so the Disney studios needed to lease the single available CinemaScope lens from 20th Century-Fox. This prevented multiple units from shooting at the same time, which not only contributed to the lengthy production schedule, but also--since Disney wanted the best possible value for the CinemaScope lens rental--explains the almost complete absence of close-up shots in the movie. See more »


When the Nautilus gets back underway after sinking from the New Guinea reef, Nemo states, "There are limits beyond which man and his puny efforts cannot survive, we exceeded them by 5,000 feet." Although not for another 100 years was any undersea craft built for such depth capability, and then only small research submersibles, the conceit of the film is that Nemo invented many advanced technologies far ahead of his time. See more »


Captain Nemo: Accept one of these cigars, professor.
Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator: Thank you.
[He lights it]
Professor Pierre Aronnax, narrator: Delightful smoke. Different somehow. Havana?
Captain Nemo: Seaweed.
See more »


Referenced in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006) See more »


Toccata and Fugue in D Minor
by Johann Sebastian Bach
Played by James Mason (uncredited) (dubbed by an anonymous organist)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Great DVD Makes This Fun Again
27 April 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

One of the first movies, along with "Shane," that I ever saw as a young kid that I still watch and enjoy today is this one. One of the reasons I still enjoy it is the wonderful restoration job someone did in the latest DVD that was released in 2004.

Of course, it's not as exciting as seeing this on the big screen as a youngster, but it's still entertaining thanks to the intelligent dialog of James Mason, the humor (believe it or not) of Peter Lorre and the good special effects. The submarine is still neat to watch, particularly at night with the green glow to it. I haven't seen anything like it since. I haven't seen a giant squid attacking a boat, either, come to think of it. That still is pretty cool.

I don't find this movie "spectacular" as its reputation but it's still a very worthy addition to any movie buff's collection. It's one of the classics of the '50s that has been revived with this great-looking DVD which also has some interesting extra features.

33 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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They should remake it... bdunlap-2
Other great aquatic adventure/science fiction films? cinderwild
Nemo a Villain?? mortimerj190
James Mason is the real Star here Freddie1980
Remake? wvu1313
I know it's only a story but... monaghantom
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