Set in the distant future, Dune tells the story of Paul Atreides whose family accepts control of the desert planet Arrakis. As the only producer of a highly valuable resource, control of Arrakis is highly contested among the noble families. After Paul and his family are betrayed, the story explores themes of politics, religion, and man’s relationship to nature as Paul leads a rebellion to restore his family’s control of Arrakis.
The project from Legendary Entertainment is produced by Mary Parent, Cale Boyter, and Villeneuve. Thomas Tull will executive produce with Brian Herbert, Byron Merritt, and Kim Herbert for the Frank Herbert estate. Kevin J. Anderson will serve as a creative consultant.
Legendary landed rights to not only film adaptations of the best-selling series, but also TV projects.
The novel was previously adapted in 1984, starring Kyle MacLachlan and directed by David Lynch. While a financial flop at the time, it has since grown a cult status. Director Alejandro Jodorowsky attempted to adapt the epic novel in the mid-1970s but Jodorowsky’s vision would’ve resulted in a 14-hour film and ultimately stalled for financial reasons. The saga of Jodorowsky’s dream to make the film was the subject of the 2014 documentary Jodorowsky’s Dune.
More recently, a television mini-series that follows the original trilogy of Dune, Dune Messiah, and Children of Dune was made in 2000 by Syfy and was a ratings hit. That adaptation starred William Hurt, Alec Newman, James McAvoy, Jessica Brooks, and Susan Sarandon.
Roth won an Oscar for writing Forrest Gump and was nominated for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Munich, and The Insider.
Villeneuve recently received and Oscar nomination for Best Director for Arrival starring Amy Adams. His next film, Blade Runner 2049 is due out later this year.
Roth is repped by CAA and Jackoway Tyerman Wertheimer Austen Mandelbaum Morris & Klein.
Villeneuve is repped by CAA and Claude Girard Agency.
Emily J | TV Editor