“I always felt I was the bad son”: Rumored James Bond Director Denis Villeneuve Had One Guilt For Trying To Make It in Hollywood Despite His Impressive Box Office Record

Rumored James Bond Director Denis Villeneuve Had One Guilt For Trying To Make It in Hollywood Despite His Impressive Box Office Record
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Denis Villeneuve is a well-known Canadian director who achieved international renown for several critically praised and financially successful projects. His films have grossed approximately $1.1 billion globally. After directing the blockbuster epic science fiction film Dune (2021) and its forthcoming sequel, Hollywood studios and producers have been eyeing the famed director to helm their respective endeavors.


Recent reports have even alleged that James Bond producers are trying to get Villeneuve to oversee the next 007 adventure. 

Denis Villeneuve
Denis Villeneuve

Read also: Denis Villeneuve Felt Exiled By His Community For Exploiting A Tragic Real-Life Massacre For His Film


Although there are yet to be confirmations about the mentioned rumor, we can affirm that the Québécois director and screenwriter is in demand. And understandably so. His cinematic vision is absolute genius. Despite the adulation he is presently receiving, Villeneuve disclosed the guilt he still carries with himself for choosing a path much different than what his mentor figure envisioned for him. He shared this during THR’s 2018 Directors Roundtable.

Denis Villeneuve’s Intriguing Anecdote About One Of The Most Important Canadian Filmmakers

Denis Villeneuve
Denis Villeneuve’s decision upset a senior filmmaker.

During THR’s 2018 Directors Roundtable, all the filmmakers in attendance were asked which film they would take with them to watch on a DVD or Blu-Ray device if they were ever on a lifeboat. When it was Denis Villeneuve’s turn, he began with an anecdote about an elder Canadian documentary film director, Pierre Perrault. The Blade Runner 2049 director remembered feeling the “burden of being liked” shortly after graduating from film school. As a result, he created a short film.

He revealed that a senior filmmaker back home, Pierre Perrault, liked him. Describing the legacy of the Montreal-born documentary helmer, Villeneuve had the following to state:


“Pierre Perrault [was a] master who was doing documentaries. In the ’60s, he was a part of the film movement, realistic film movement, where they were the first ones to have [taken] the camera out of the tripod and go with real people. And they had made a fantastic movie called Pour La Suite Du Monde on a small island in Quebec.”

Canadian documentary film director Pierre Perrault
Canadian documentary film director Pierre Perrault

Read also: Denis Villeneuve Had a Harsh Criticism for Star Wars Despite Comparing $549M Sequel to Stanley Kubrick’s Masterpiece

The Dune alum explained that the project’s filmmakers, including Perrault, spent three years on the island shooting the docu-film. The subject of interest was a fisherman. There, they also created a feature film that Denis Villeneuve characterizes as “almost a masterpiece.” 

The rumored James Bond director subsequently stated that his decision to develop fictional endeavors upset the esteemed Canadian documentary filmmaker.


Denis Villeneuve Felt Like “The Bad Son” For Disappointing Pierre Perrault

Dune FandomWire
Denis Villeneuve on the set of Dune

Perrault cherished Villeneuve, but he was disappointed when the younger director chose fiction filmmaking over documentary. In the words of the Arrival alum, “For some reason, he liked me, and he was very sad that I was going to do fiction instead of documentary.” The 55-year-old Oscar nominee further explained the reason behind the late director’s dissatisfaction:

“For him, fiction was like, ‘Why are you crying when Catherine Deneuve is crying? It’s like—It’s fake when you can [do] real.’ Because his movies are very strong. All my life, I felt like I owed him a lot because I learned a lot working with him. But I always felt that I was the bad son. The one who went to do fiction instead because I was attracted to fiction.” 

Denis Villeneuve‘s failure to follow in the footsteps of Pierre Perrault seemingly upset the latter. Instead of capturing the real, the former’s interest belonged to fictional narratives. Circling back to the initial topic, the interviewer asked if Villeneuve would watch the late documentary filmmaker’s work on the lifeboat as a form of penance for upsetting him.

Denis Villeneuve
Denis Villeneuve

Read also: Denis Villeneuve Regrets Making Blade Runner 2049, Reveals Chris Nolan Warned Him Before ‘Desecrating’ Sacred Territory


Villeneuve responded the following:

“There is a trilogy about that island which is amongst the most beautiful movies I’ve ever seen. Yeah, about the fishermen. I might. That could be the answer.”

In closing, the director-screenwriter joked about his alternative preference. Denis Villeneuve would watch Stanley Kubrick‘s 2001: A Space Odyssey to prepare for his death. “It’s like my favorite film of all time.” He noted.

Villeneuve’s predilection for fictional filmmaking may have displeased a prominent documentary director and become a source of guilt for the former. However, his love of fiction is precisely what birthed some of Hollywood’s most astonishing projects in recent years. With that in mind, who are we to complain?


Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part Two is slated for a March 15, 2024 release.

Source: Director’s Roundtable | Close Up With THR


Written by Debdipta Bhattacharya

Articles Published: 659

Debdipta Bhattacharya is a content writer at FandomWire, where she has written more than 500 articles on various topics of interest. She possesses a sincere passion for popular culture, anime, film production, and the evolving world of YouTube and streaming culture which has allowed her to be a devoted and well-informed writer. Debdipta holds a bachelor's degree in Mass Communication. She has honed her skills and expertise in content writing with over two years of experience and strives to learn and grow daily.