Dune Co-Writer Shares ‘Adventurous’ Opening Villeneuve Chopped

Picture: Warner Bros.

Screenwriter Eric Roth is an industry veteran when it comes to adaptations. Before working with director Denis Villeneuve to tackle Frank Herbert’s film Duneshe earned Oscar nominations for his work on Forrest Gump, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The insider, A star is born, and Munich.

Not everything Roth wrote was included in the final version, of course, and in a recent interview with IndieWire, he shares the “adventurous” opening he initially had for the film.

“At [Dune] I had done some rewrites on Arrival for Denis,” Roth told IndieWire. “That’s when I met him on the phone. He started shooting Blade Runner 2049; he was in Budapest. I did some work to reinforce some things. Then he asked, “Would you be interested in doing Dunes?’” And I said, ‘I don’t know. I’m not sure this is my bailiwick.

Roth admitted that he had never been a “fanboy” of Dunes but thought he could bring a new perspective to the material. “I love Denis,” he said. “He made very good films, very intelligent, a visualist. I said, “I’ll try, but maybe I’m a little here for you.” I took risks: some paid, others perhaps should have paid and didn’t.

When asked which ones didn’t work, Roth shared his original opening for the film: “Because I’m adventurous, I started the film with what appears to be Genesis – ‘and God created’ – and you think you’re seeing the formation of the Earth. And it’s Dune, with wild animals, things you’ve never seen. Denis said: “It’s beautiful, but now we can’t allow us the rest of the film.” I don’t know if that was his way of saying, ‘I don’t want to do it!’ »

We’ll probably never know if Villeneuve liked the idea or was just being polite (personally, I’d assume the latter, but that’s just pure guesswork). Roth goes on to describe the co-writing process on Dunes with Villeneuve and fellow writer, Jon Spaihts. “There was a weird symmetry,” he said. “It was fluid, a strange way for three different people, who I’ve never seen, to work together. Everyone’s strength came to the fore. And Denis, with his wonderful style and vision, has it all. reunited in the movie he wanted to make.

Roth is back at work writing a biopic Cher as well as a Netflix romance starring Chris Hemsworth as “a really nice rock ‘n’ roll guy.” While we wait Dune: part 2 you can watch the premiere of Villenueve Dunes movie on VOD.

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