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'Soul Catcher' Producer plans Native Film with casting director Rene Haynes

Frank Herbert 1972 book
Frank Herbert 1972 book
A Berkey Book paperback cover

“Deadline Hollywood” blog writer Jen Yamato announced on Aug. 14, 2014, that film producer Dimitri Villard has optioned the 1972 book “Soul Catcher.” Villard is planning a movie on it that was written by Frank Herbert. A man named Greg Bernstein negotiated the option deal for Villard with Jody Hotchkiss who represents the Frank Herbert estate. The author passed away in 1986 & his best selling science fiction book, “Dune” was made into a feature film in 1984.

Villard is talking with casting director Rene Haynes who cast Native Americans in productions from “Dances with Wolves” to “Into the West.” Ideas will be fleshed out on who should be cast in “Soul Catcher.”

Dimitri Villard told Deadline Hollywood, “The book is an extraordinary example of Frank Herbert’s brilliant writing, and it is something I’ve always wanted to turn into a film. I remember the rights being unavailable when I first pursued the 'Soul Catcher' project in the ’80s, but as my producing career developed I never forgot the powerful effect the story had on me.”

“Now, with full support from the Frank Herbert estate, we have the opportunity to make a culturally impactful film that combines elements of suspense, high drama, mysticism and Native American history that will resonate for years to come and appeal to the millions of Frank Herbert fans worldwide.”

According to the official website of “Barnes and Noble.” Here is an overview of “Soul Catcher.” - “Katsuk, a militant Native American student, kidnaps 13-year-old David Marshall-the son of the US Undersecretary of State. The two flee into the deepest wilds of the Pacific Northwest, where they must survive together as teams of hunters try to track them.”

“David begins to feel a growing bond of respect for his captor, even as he struggles to escape. What the boy does not know, however, is that he has been chosen as an innocent from the white world for an ancient sacrifice of vengeance. And Katsuk may be divinely inspired or simply insane.”

The 1972 “Soul Catcher” was known as a book that steers away from Frank Herbert's popular science fiction works. Some critics call it very poetic. Others call it a vengeful piece. Villard is now looking for a film director who will help bring this character driven book to the big screen.

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