Dune Remake to be a Hard PG-13, Massive Adventure Epic
It's been two years since Peter Berg confirmed he was attached to direct the third adaptation of Frank Herbert's seminal science fiction novel Dune. Of course, the first adaptation was auteur David Lynch's avant-garde, torpid 1984 film, the second being Sci Fi Channel'sminiseries in 2000. But little has been said about this third attempt to corral the story of Paul Atreides and his family amidst a futuristic feudal interstellar empire as they take control of the lone source of spice melange, the most valuable resource in the universe. It's no wonder Dune has proved a worthy foe when condensed into film form.
And when speaking to MTV, Berg confirmed this exact problem. The script, as it stands, is almost 200 pages, according to Berg, "a massive epic." But even before "beating [the script] into something manageable without offending the purists," Berg is looking into the future, saying Dune has franchise potential. But of the first film in his proposed franchise, he said this:
"My experience with the book was different than David Lynch's experience or the people behind the Sci Fi Channel's experience. I found it to be more of an adventure tale, more of a muscular action/adventure story. I think that's my approach, not as an R-rated film, but as a pretty hard PG-13 film about a young man dealing with issues of vengeance over the death of his father and wanting some payback and having to come to terms with his destiny along the way."
Sounds a bit like the Star Wars prequels, to me. Sure, the Dune universe is a rich, expansive environment, but what makes Dune, Dune is the interplay of the socio-economic, political struggles effecting the characters and the familial, localized emotional struggle of the main characters. Distilling the story into a base action/adventure story? It won't be a Dune that the purists will flock to, but it may, in reality, make a lot better film. And overall, making a great film is Peter Berg's foremost job. Should they just let a sleeping sandworm lie? Or does Berg's take on Dune sound like what you've always hoped for? Stay tuned for more updates.