Denis Villeneuve Admits Editing ‘Dune’ From Home Has Been ‘Painful’

Denis Villeneuve is opening up about what it is like to edit a movie like “Dune” from home.

The director, who is behind the upcoming film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic novel Dune, chatted about the “painful” process amid the COVID-19 outbreak during a recent interview with the Shanghai International Film Festival.

“The impact was that it crushed my schedule right now,” he explained. “It will be a sprint to finish the movie on time right now.”

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He added, “For me, the big lesson of this is I thought that it would be possible to edit at a distance having my editor sharing with computers, being far from one another, but I realize how much editing is like playing music with someone and you need to be in the same room. I mean there’s something about the interaction, human interaction, spontaneity, the energy in the room. I really miss not being in the same room with my editor… not being in the same room as my editor is very, very painful.”

COVID-19 isn’t the only hurdle “Dune” and Villeneuve will face, according to Alejandro Jodrowsky, who detailed what he would have done if he attempted to recreate “Dune” in 2013’s “Jodorowsky’s Dune”, says the project is almost impossible to pull off. David Lynch was the first to try in 1984.

“‘Dune’ is a book that’s like Proust. It’s science fiction but it’s very, very literary,” Jodorowsky told IndieWire. “It’s very difficult to find images to put in the film because pictures are optical. When I had the idea to do that, it was in an ecological [crisis]. I was feeling what all the people feel today. We’re in an ecological problem, because the Earth is changing, and your crazy President doesn’t believe that. That is ‘Dune’ in the beginning.”

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He added, “The first time they said it was safe to do ‘Dune,’ and [David Lynch] did it, I was ill, because it was my dream. They showed the picture in Paris, and my son said, ‘You need to see the picture.’ I was ill to do that. Ill. And then they start to show the picture, and step by step, I was so happy, so happy, so happy because it was a shitty picture. I realized, ‘Dune,’ nobody can do it. It’s a legend.”

Villeneuve and the “Dune” cast, which consists of Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem and more, were filming in Budapest, Hungary, and Jordan this past March before the coronavirus pandemic shut production down.

“Dune” is currently scheduled to hit theatres on Dec. 18.

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