When The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen came out in 2003, it met a dismal fate at the box office. The film was trying to cash in on the rising interest in film adaptations of comic books, on the heels of films like Blade and X-Men. To say it missed the mark would be understatement, but for all its faults, the film gets quite a few things right. Among the highlights from this film had to be Peta Wilson as Mina Harker.
In the comic book version, Mina remains human after her encounter with Dracula, but her story isn’t a happily ever after with Jonathan Harker. Instead, they eventually divorce, and she retakes her maiden name of Murray. Ironically, the character does eventually become immortal, but not as a vampire.
For the film, Peta Wilson’s version transformed her into a vampire on the side of the good guys. The idea here is that Dracula’s destruction didn’t save her from becoming a member of the undead. Instead of divorcing her husband, Mina becomes a widow by virtue of outliving (or perhaps rather “out-unliving”) Jonathan, and she maintains the last name of Harker. Frankly, it’s only one of a massive amount of changes from the source material. Perhaps most noteworthy is that Mina served as the league’s leader in the comic book. The film opted to make Allan Quartermain, played by Sean Connery, the leader. Despite the changes, I really loved Peta Wilson’s performance. She’s a total badass, and one can only wonder where a future film might have taken her character if the first film hadn’t flopped.