Last we heard, the writing was on the wall for "Dune." It was last November that it was reported that Paramount was given a deadline of this spring (read: now) to get a film into production or risk losing the rights to the film and with nothing having happened since, it's no surprise to now hear the project is dead at the studio.
Deadline reports that the option has expired and now the film is back in the hands of Richard P. Rubinstein, who controls the rights. And it looks like he's going to back to square one with the project; but for kicks, let's go over a brief history thus far.
Director Peter Berg was once attached, but he couldn’t mount two hefty tentpoles at once, at least not under Paramount’s time frame so he left for Universal‘s Mattel board game adaptation of “Battleship." When Berg jumped ship, hot helmer of the moment (or that moment, anyhow) B-thriller director Pierre Morel, riding high off the surprise smash success of "Taken" signed onto the job. But perhaps sensing that things weren't going to work out, he left the film as well to take on the Sam Raimi-produced alien invasion flick "Earth Defense Force."
“I’m going to look at my options, and whether I wind up taking the script we developed in turnaround, or start over, I’m not sure yet,” Rubinstein said adding that, “Right now, 'Dune' has no commitments or attachments.” However, Rubinstein and producer Kevin Misher liked the direction Morel and screenwriter Chase Palmer had taken with the film and they plan to re-approach them for the film. But the big problem to solve first, will be finding someone to foot the $100 million price tag for the project.
So, Frank Herbert fans will have to wait. But there's always the David Lynch version.....right?