HERBERT, Frank (1920-1986), and Alejandro JODOROWSKY (b. 1929). Dune. Original script for the first adaptation project. .
Original script for the first adaptation project. A fascinating working document, with numerous manuscript additions and corrections, offering a deep dive into the creative process and the ever evolving nature of the script. Copies of this script were distributed to the artists working on the project, as inspiration source and a means of understanding the plot and the lore of Dune. Often described as the "greatest movie that was never made”, Alejandro Jodorowsky’s filmic adaptation of Dune is one of the most famous doomed projects in movie history. Originally published in 1965 in the United States, Frank Herbert’s Dune received several sequels and became the best-selling science fiction book ever, deeply influencing several generations. A movie adaptation quickly appeared as a logical continuation – with Franco-Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky at its helm. “One day, the divine power told me, in a lucid dream : ‘Your next movie will be Dune’. I had not even read the book! I woke up at six and, like an alcoholic frenetically waiting for the local bar to open, I was waiting outside of the bookshop. I read it without stopping, not even to drink or to eat. At midnight sharp, the very same day, I had finished the book. A 1 past midnight, I gave a call from New York to Michel Seydoux in Paris”. Seydoux had handled distribution in France of his previous movie, the Holy Mountain (1973), and had offered to be the producer of Jodorowsky’s next movie. “When I told him that I wanted him to buy the rights for Dune, and that the movie needed to an international market as it would cost upwards of 10 million dollars (a maddening sum for these times – Hollywood did not have faith in science fiction movies, as the general belief was the 2001 was the apex), he did not break a sweat. He gave me carte blanche and an enormous financial support. I could build my own team without worries”. The rights are acquired in 1974, and Jodorowsky started working on the script. Copies of his first version of the story were then distributed to the artists he drafted to work on the movie, for pre-production work. For the majority of them, the book is terra incognita, and it’s truly Jodorowsky’s passion and ambition which must have convinced them to join the cosmic journey. Chris Foss, who was one of the first artists drafted for this project and who drew many of spaceships and vehicles, confirmed in a 2013 interview : “I still haven’t read the book! I have no idea what the actual story is. None whatsoever. It all came through Alejandro and the script. As far as I’m concerned, the story of Dune is what Alejandro told me it was”.
4° (292 x 206 mm). 1 title page and 167 pages of text, after a typed original, printed recto only. Yellow wrappers, with the title printed in black on the front. 49 with manuscript corrections or annotations, in black, yellow or red ink or pencil, 2 of them with pasted pieces of paper with a new version of the text. 7 pages with rough pencil sketches. Provenance : Chris Foss' personal working copy.
Sorry, we are unable to display this content. Please check your connection.
You have agreed to be bound by the Conditions of Sale and if your bid is successful, you are legally obliged to pay for the lot you have won. The purchase price for a successful bid will be the sum of your final bid plus a buyer’s premium, any applicable taxes and any artist resale royalty, exclusive of shipping-related expenses.
A Christie's specialist may contact you to discuss this lot or to notify you if the condition changes prior to the sale.