In Frank Herbert’s sci-fi classic Dune, he who controls the spice controls the universe — and no one learns that lesson more harshly than Paul Atreides, the young prince portrayed by Timothée Chalamet in filmmaker Denis Villeneuve’s upcoming adaptation of the groundbreaking saga.
We now have our first look at Chalamet as the troubled prince whose privileged life on the desert planet Arrakis is up-ended when his family is targeted by vicious rivals. The photo was revealed by Vanity Fair ahead of an upcoming, in-depth preview of Villeneuve’s film, which is still scheduled to hit theaters on December 18.
— VANITY FAIR (@VanityFair) April 13, 2020
First announced in 2016, Dune is based on the seminal 1965 novel of the same name penned by Herbert, widely regarded as one of the greatest works of science-fiction and the inspiration for countless novels, films, TV series, and other projects.
Herbert’s Dune follows the noble family Atreides in the far-flung future as they relocate to the desert planet to assume stewardship and manage the production of spice, the most valuable substance in the universe. The power that comes with their new position puts them in the crosshairs of a rival family, and the young prince Paul soon finds himself struggling to survive on the dangerous planet, which is home to massive sandworms and a mysterious, native culture with powerful abilities.
Villeneuve’s Dune is expected to cover the first half of Herbert’s original novel and has an A-list cast supporting the saga.
Along with Chalamet as protagonist Paul Atreides, the film’s cast features Josh Brolin as the veteran soldier and Paul’s mentor, Gurney Halleck, as well as Oscar Isaac and Rebecca Ferguson as Duke Leto Atreides and Lady Jessica Atreides, respectively. Yet another Academy Award winner, Javier Bardem, portrays Stilgar, the leader of Arrakis’ indigenous population, known as the Fremen.
Villeneuve, who became one of Hollywood’s most sought-after filmmakers with a string of hits including the alien-invasion drama Arrival and critically acclaimed sequel Blade Runner 2049, has been attached to Dune since 2017. The film is one of the few high-profile 2020 films not to have its release date pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting theater closings around the world.
Herbert’s Dune was previously adapted as a 1984 film directed by David Lynch and a 2000 miniseries directed by John Harrison.
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