Honestly, I — and many others — are flabbergasted. It appears Spice DAO has confused owning a copy of Jodorowsky’s Dune with having any sort of say over the copyright of said material.
This is akin to me saying I have a rare Jar Jar Binks toy (true), which means I can start shooting my own version of Star Wars with him as the main character (false).
The auction in question closed on November 22, 2021. It was handled by Christie’s and we can confirm that, yes, the book did sell for €2.66 million. The estimate for the lot was between €25 thousand and €35 thousand. This means Spice DAO paid roughly between 76 and 100 times the asking price.
Dune is one of the most famous science fiction franchises in the world, but has had a troubled history moving from the page to screen.
In 1974, the rights were acquired to film a Dune movie by a French consortium and Franco-Chilean director Alejandro Jodorowsky took the helm. He envisioned a movie that was ten to 15 hours long, and decided to pitch this gargantuan undertaking to the American studios.
To try and make it a reality, Jodorowsky worked with celebrated artists Moebius, Chris Foss, and H. R. Giger to put together a book (his so-called “director’s bible”) filled with illustrations and a story board in order to secure funding.
This is what Spice DAO purchased.
On one hand, this is an amazing get. The failed making of this version of the sci-fi epic was turned into an incredibly popular (and fantastic) documentary called Jodorowsky’s Dune. Maybe purchasing this book could shine further light on this fascinating tale?