Taken director helms Dune
There are two big surprises about the directors job for the remake of Dune, or the new version adapted from the Frank Herbert novels, the first being that Peter Berg turned down the chance to direct the film in order to make Battleships, yes the film based on the board game, and secondly that the new director has been chosen.
It's none other than Pierre Morel, the director of Taken (Filmstalker review) and the upcoming From Paris With Love, for which there's a new trailer online today.
Now the two films we've seen from Pierre Morel already would suggest something very different to the old take on Dune that we saw from David Lynch in 1984, and so far the films from Morel look very similar to each other in tone and stylised action. Dune could be, and probably fans of Dune will want it to be, a direction change for the director.
Variety are reporting that Morel has taken up the task but first he has the job of refining the script, and that perhaps means making sure there's more action in it. However don't be thinking that the film is going to be stylised action just because Morel is on board, after all Peter Berg is known for a fair bit of action, and he co-wrote it with the man developing the next Bourne film, Joshua Zetumer, so it looks more action based from the outset, even before Morel joined.
There's an interesting point made in Variety, which is unusual, they say that in 1974 a French version of the film was attempted when a consortium, including such names as Salvador Dali, Orson Welles, Hervé Villechaize, Mick Jagger, Gloria Swanson, David Carradine, Geraldine Chaplin and Alain Delon, bought the rights to the novel to create a ten hour adaptation of the story. It never happened though, and this will be the second on screen version.
I'm somewhat surprised by the choice, but let's not write off Morel, he has three films to his name and we haven't seen the third one as yet, and although From Paris With Love is looking in a similar vein to Taken and Banlieue 13 (District 13) (Filmstalker review), the two we've seen have been slightly different in tone.
The proof will be in the viewing, but is he right for Dune?