Atlantis: The Lost Empire really went under the radar during its first release for many reasons, and has more or less stayed that way ever since.
After a decade of dynamic, exciting musicals, Disney was being a bit more experimental and were making more Sci-fi style adventures. Pixar and rival studio Dreamworks were rising in popularity, which resulted in Atlantis being rather eclipsed. It was so different to anything that came before it and was perhaps created for the wrong audiences.
But even if it was a different flavour of Disney, Atlantis is an excellent action-adventure flick, full of gorgeous animated sequences and distinctive world building.
Michael J. Fox is perfect as the geeky lead Milo Thatch, a passionate linguist who is fascinated by the history of mysterious Atlantis. He gets the chance to join a group of experienced explorers in looking for the lost continent of the Atlantic, creating a story that is both exciting and very unpredictable.
With a film full of rich depth and creativity unfortunately not getting the fanbase it deserves, there are many aspects of Atlantis which have gone totally unnoticed.
10. Atlantis: The Lost Empire Is Widely Recognised As The Last Film Of Jim Varney.
The late great Jim Varney was a beloved comedian and actor, best known for his character of Ernest P. Worrell in the Ernest film series. He was also the voice of Slinky in the first two Toy Story movies. But that wasn’t his only time voicing an animated movie character.
As a last Huzzah to Varney, he was able to showcase his talents one last time as the voice of the comical oddball Cookie – the chef of the expedition. Varney was battling lung cancer during the making of the film, and died at the age of fifty just before production finished.
The one line “I ain’t so good at speechifying” was voiced by his close friend Steven Barr and the film was dedicated in his memory.
Directors Kirk Wise and Gary Trousdale thoroughly enjoyed working with Varney, as he knew how to improvise and ad-lib for such a humorous character, even going as far as singing randomly made-up campfire songs.