Kick-ass director Pierre Morel is taking over Dune, the troublesome adaptation of Frank Herbert's classic sci-fi novel from Paramount. Morel, hot off the hit Taken and the upcoming From Paris, With Love, signed on after director Peter Berg bowed out.
When Berg signed on in May 2008, we interviewed him and he sounded excited about the then-new project, which he planned as an epic adventure. Apparently Berg decided instead to tackle Universal's Battleship and Lone Survivor.
Producer Kevin Misher originally spent a year securing the rights from Herbert's estate before taking it to Paramount in 2008. The project still does not have a script or a writer attached.
Herbert's Dune, a Hugo and Nebula award-winning novel, is an epic tale of political intrigue and survival involving the struggle to control Melange, a spice that exists only on the desert planet Arrakis. Melange can increase psychic powers and longevity and is used for interstellar travel. The adventure follows young Paul Atreides, who just may be the messiah the people of Arrakis have been waiting for.
The novel spawned five sequels and prequels, which were continued by Herbert's son and author Kevin J. Anderson after Herbert died in 1986. Dune also became a movie directed by David Lynch, who should have known 1984 was an ominous year to try to do a sweeping tale like Dune. The film didn't do well with American audiences. Then Syfy adapted the novel as a miniseries in 2000, which was considered a critical and financial success.
Do you think movie audiences are ready for a kick-ass version of Dune? And can Morel do the job in 1 hour and 34 minutes (the length of Taken)?