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‘Forrest Gump’ Writer Eric Roth to Pen Denis Villeneuve’s ‘Dune’ Reboot (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety logo Variety 4/5/2017 Justin Kroll
© Provided by Variety

Legendary has tapped veteran scribe Eric Roth to write the “Dune” reboot.

“Arrival” and “Sicario” filmmaker Denis Villeneuve is directing the movie.

Legendary closed a deal with the Frank Herbert estate last Thanksgiving for his iconic novel, granting the studio rights to not only films, but also TV projects on the sci-fi property.

The projects would be produced by Villeneuve, Mary Parent and Cale Boyter, with Brian Herbert, Byron Merritt, Thomas Tull and Kim Herbert serving as executive producers. Kevin J Anderson will serve as a creative consultant.

Set in the distant future, “Dune” follows Paul Atreides, whose family assumes control of the desert planet Arrakis. As the only producer of a highly valuable resource, jurisdiction over Arrakis is contested among competing noble families. After Paul and his family are betrayed, the story explores themes of politics, religion, and man’s relationship to nature, as Paul leads a rebellion to restore his family’s reign.

The book has sold almost 20 million copies since its original release and in 2003 was named the best-selling sci fi novel of all time.

The novel was also adapted for the 1984 film directed by David Lynch. The movie, which starred Kyle MacLachlan, was initially considered a flop — it was critically panned and grossed just $30.9 million on a $40 million budget — but has recently attained cult status.

Best known for his work on Oscar fare such as “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “Munich,” and “Forrest Gump,” which earned Roth his only Academy Award, this movie would mark Roth’s first foray into the world of science fiction.

He is repped by CAA and Jackoway Tyerman Wertheimer Austen Mandelbaum Morris & Klein.

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