Sting on 'Dune'
"I'm doing 'Dune' because of David Lynch and for no other reason. I didn't really want to do the movie, because I didn't think it was wise for me to be in an enormous movie. I'd rather keep a groundswell building up in my movie career. So, I sort of went along dragging my heels. Then I met David and I loved him. He's a madman in sheep's clothing, and I just felt I had to do the movie because I know he's going to do something extraordinary."
Rolling Stone, 9/83
On what we thought of being used as box office bait on 'Dune'...
"I was very angry about it. The publicity machine panicked about a film that cost US million and they did anything in their power to sell it. I didn't even like the film, I don't have a clue what it was about, it was very confusing."
The Courier Mail (Australia), 7/85
"Sometimes filming is boring and not very interesting. At it's worst, you're a coat-hanger for other people's clothes; at its best, you get to create with others. There's a great deal of risk involved. That's why I refuse to take responsibility for any film I'm in. It's the directors movie. There's a long time between filming and editing, and I quickly learned that the publicity department of any film will ruthlessly abuse whoever's in it. I've done cameo roles that I thought would be interesting, where I've been amazed at the way my name has been exploited. 'Dune' for example. I'm on for five minutes but when you see the poster it's STING IN DUNE! DON'T MISS IT! I keep a low profile about movies, now. If I have a small part - which I don't mind - I don't do publicity. If my character is essential to the plot, I do my piece."
Sky Magazine, 11/87
"There's no actor who's been in nothing but great movies, nothing but successes. You can make a few lousy movies in relative obscurity. But my celebrity, if you like, means people hang a movie on me, even if I'm just doing a cameo in it. It becomes "Sting's movie." I agreed to do this cameo in 'Dune' because I like David Lynch's work. Then it becomes my film. And because it wasn't a mammoth hit, it was marked down as my failure."
Rolling Stone, 5/88
"I'm not the sort of person that seeks out his own films or albums but I actually saw 'Dune' quite recently when I was flicking through the channels in a hotel room in the Midwest. Suddenly there they were, the flying underpants. They were great but very tricky to get on under your flares. I still don't actually know what 'Dune' was about but then I don't know if anyone did. I think David Lynch made a three and a half hour film that was cut down to two hours so it probably made sense before the edit."
Sting plays animalistic Feyd-Rautha in David's Lynch's 1984 adaptation of Frank Herbert's multi-million selling epic sci-fi novel. The year is 10,191; forces from around the universe are vying for control of the spice melange - a substance shrouded in mystery - which extends life, expands consciousness, allows for convenient inter-galactic travel and exists only on the planet Arrakis (aka Dune). This pretty much all that is clear in the film's labyrinthine plot. Director Lynch has made a career out of depicting the bizarre. His best known works, 'Blue Velvet' (1986), 'Wild At Heart' (1991) and the cult television show 'Twin Peaks' - focus in particular on the dark underbelly of seemingly tranquil small-town America. Although different in scope and content, 'Dune' has all the requisite Lynch trademarks; dialogue that verges on non-sequitur, physical deformities ad nauseum, and thinly disguised erotic symbolism (Hello, giant worms!). The director himself makes a cameo appearance as a besieged spice harvester. While 'Dune' featured internationally recognised veteran actors such as Jose Ferrer, Max Von Sydow, and Silvana Mangano and future American television stars such as Patrick "Captain Pickard" Stewart, Kyle "Agent Dale Cooper" Maclachan, the movie's marketing campaign focused on a relatively inexperienced actor whose scant onscreen appearances total approximately ten minutes. Yes, those were the heady Synchronicity days and Sting basked in the promotional spotlight - and speaking of scant, Sting's performance can be condensed into two words - flying underpants. The memorable scene in which Feyd emerges from slumber, clad only in his signature inter-galactic briefs is a Calvin Klein moment straight from the future.
All This Time CD-ROM