With his much-anticipated adaptation of sci-fi epic Dune in cinemas now, we talk to director Denis Villeneuve about realising a childhood ambition and bringing his vision of Dune to life...
Arguably one of the most influential science-fiction novels of the 20th century, Frank Herbert's epic novel Dune has been the subject of numerous attempts to adapt its sprawling story for the big screen, but between David Lynch's beautiful-but-flawed 1984 film and Alejandro Jodorowsky's grand vision eventually collapsing under the weight of its own ambition, for many years fans of the novel have felt that there has yet to be a truly faithful cinematic adaptation of Dune.
Fortunately, one of those fans was Blade Runner 2049 director Denis Villeneuve, who began to take steps towards achieving a long-standing ambition to bring his vision of Dune to life when the rights to the book were purchased by Legendary Pictures in 2016.
Villeneuve signed on as director a year later and has recruited an impressive, star-studded cast led by Timothée Chalamet in the role of Paul Atreides, alongside Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Stellan Skarsgård, Charlotte Rampling, Zendaya, Dave Bautista, Josh Brolin, Jason Momoa and Javier Bardem.
Covering roughly the first half of the novel's story (a second film is expected but yet to be officially confirmed), Dune focuses on the House of Atreides, rulers of the ocean planet Caladan, and their trials as they are handed control of desert planet Arrakis, source of the lucrative substance known as spice, by the Emperor of the Galactic Padishah Empire - to the detriment of their longtime enemies, House Harkonnen, who had run the spice harvesting operation on the planet for the previous 80 years.
Arriving on Arrakis, Paul's father Leto Atreides realises he has walked into a political trap, and when conflict ensues Paul seeks out help from the planet's local population, the desert-dwelling Fremen, and a woman who has been haunting his dreams.
Dune finally made its debut in cinemas in October last year and arrives in stores for the first time this week. Ahead of the film's release we spoke to Denis Villeneuve about why he wanted to tackle the challenge of bringing Dune to cinema screens.
Watch our interview below...
Dune is available in hmv stores now - you can also find it here in our online store.