Sicaro director Denis Villeneuve has turned to science fiction lately, with his Arrival screening at The Toronto International Film Festival (our review here) and his Blade Runner sequel currently filming on location in Budapest, Hungary. In an interview with Variety, Villeneuve revealed his desire to continue making sci-fi after Blade Runner 2. Specifically, he’d like to remake Dune:
“I had been wanting to do sci-fi for a very long time. 2001: A Space Odyssey is a movie that really impressed me as a teenager. And also Blade Runner. And Close Encounters of the Third Kind is also one of my favorites. I’m always looking for sci-fi material, and it’s difficult to find original and strong material that’s not just about weaponry. A longstanding dream of mine is to adapt Dune, but it’s a long process to get the rights, and I don’t think I will succeed. Also I would love to write something myself. I have two [sci-fi] projects right now that are in very stages. It’s too early to talk about them.”
To recap, 1984’s Dune was a flop which can be summarized with emojis. Then Paramount paid something in the six figures for the option to adapt Dune again, and they hired Peter Berg to direct. Then Peter Berg left to direct Battleship instead, which is a reminder that Battleship is a real movie that actually happened. Paramount hired Pierre Morel (Taken, Banlieue 13) as the new director, but Morel dropped out to direct the Sam Raimi-produced Earth Defense Force, which was not finished. Then Paramount’s option expired and reverted back to Frank Herbert’s estate.
We can’t blame Villeneuve for thinking he won’t succeed in getting the rights to Dune, considering the history. But hey, it could happen. A lot has changed since then. Maybe they’ll cast Josh Gad as Sting’s codpiece. Maybe they’ll go low budget…
“THE SPICE MUST FLOW.”