The Disaster Behind 'The Island of Dr. Moreau': Warlocks, Hexes, and Dolphins

The Disaster Behind 'The Island of Dr. Moreau': Warlocks, Hexes, and Dolphins ...

The Island of Dr. Moreau, a 1996 science fiction picture, is likely to be true. Although it isn't perfect, the fateful tales from the shoot of H.G. Wells' classic novel still echoe around the darker corners of the film-making industry. Even more eerie visions of a reprise of his haunting performance as Colonel Kurtz in Apocalypse Now decades earlier

Kilmer was chosen to take on the role of Prince Edward in a pre-production meeting due to financial concerns over his highly publicized separation from Demi Moore. This was the first in a series of problems that plagued the shoot. James Woods was also forced to withdraw from the project due to his inability to fulfill the original contract.

Stanley spent years and put his cash into a recording business just to get a meeting with his experienced film partner, Brando. Eventually, Stanley hired a British warlock named Skip to help him stand up for him and keep him on the film.

Brando's daughter committed suicide a day before shooting, causing an extended production delay right out of the gate. Stanley adapted by shooting out of sequence as they waited for Brando's arrival. Nevertheless, just days later, a small hurricane struck and wreaks havoc on the filmmaker. Kilmer's role as Prendrick became more engulfed in bitterness. The cast and crew decided to start over from scratch.

Stanley's dream project began to sabotage the film. He collected storyboards and whatever other material he had that were relevant to the film. He even convinced some aboriginal people from the area to make hex ornaments for the film. After a while, he managed to return on stage as a "dogman" in several scenes of the final cut, which might be humorous if it weren't also a bit sad.

The On the Waterfront legend decided that he didn't want to read the script or memorize any of his lines because he had become obsessed with Brando's dolphin at the end of the film.

It's a feat to be granted that the film was made at all, given the circumstances surrounding it, most notably Kilmer's, but it's also difficult not to feel just a little bad for Stanley, who would soon leave the company for the next fifteen years, because of the experience. It's ironic that rewatching the film does not require doing anything.