The search is fraught with difficulty for Paramount, according to Pajiba's source. "The search, however, has run into two issues: 1) they're looking for a director who can put the movie together for under $175 million, which sounds manageable, but they don't want anything resembling the crap effects of the '84 film, and 2) they want a director who already has a preexisting passion for the novel and is enthusiastic about the project." But the search has allegedly landed on two splashy newcomers: Neil Marshall and and Neill Blomkamp. Marshall is said to be the frontrunner, championed by producer Kevin Misher. But the studio lukewarm on Marshall's resume and likes Blomkamp, who they feel has the "vision" for the film.
This is all rumor and speculation at this point, and nowhere is it stated why Berg dropped out of the remake. (A schedule conflict would be likely. Berg has one heck of a full plate.) There's also something a little too dreamy about those mentions of Blomkamp and Marshall. I'm very, very curious to see how this little rumor is played out, and if it could lead to a Dune adaptation that's palatable and faithful to Herbert.