Denis Villeneuve has been making some serious waves in Hollywood recently. His most recent film, Arrival, received 8 Academy Award nominations including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay. His other critically acclaimed films include Incendies, Prisoners, Enemy and Sicario. These films have totaled 13 Academy Award nominations over the past seven years, so to say the Villeneuve has had a pretty decent decade would be an understatement.
Next on the docket is a sequel to the science fiction classic Blade Runner, which was directed by Ridley Scott back in 1982 and starred Harrison Ford. (Check out our Blade Runner podcast here.) Villeneuve’s follow-up will be titled Blade Runner 2049 and will bring back Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard, while also starring Ryan Gosling, Jared Leto, Robin Wright and Mackenzie Davis. The film has been gaining popularity (#50 on IMDb Movie Meter) since its announcement trailer back in December 2016.
On trend for Villeneuve, The Tracking Board has confirmed that the French-Canadian will direct an adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic science fiction novel, Dune. Eric Roth will write the script. Roth has penned the scripts for films such as Forrest Gump, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Munich, Ali and The Insider.
The involvement of Villeneuve and Roth will certainly cause a lot of excitement for fans of the novel, but also a high level scrutiny. The original was a critical and financial failure, and director David Lynch distanced himself from the project citing lack of creative control. It has since gained a bit of a cult following.
Many people will be keeping a skeptical eye on Villenueve’s Blade Runner 2049, hoping that he stays true to the original but also brings something new to this cinematic world. I assume the same will happen whenever Dune gets made. Villeneuve has not missed with any of his films this past decade, let’s hope he doesn’t start now.