Frank Herbert’s beloved Dune sci-fi novels are soon getting a second chance at the big screen, thanks to Denis Villenueve’s upcoming adaptation. The Arrival and Blade Runner 2049 director cast just about all of Hollywood. Timothée Chalamet stars as Paul Atreides, with more from Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem, Dave Bautista, Charlotte Rampling, most recently Jason Momoa… oh and Stellan Skarsgård, who had this to say about all the exciting casting news:
It’s like The Avengers. It’s a delicious cast. I’ve just got the book and am going to read it now. I’m playing a small but important role. Most of all I wanted to work with Denis Villeneuve.
The cast is quite literally brimming with talent and even includes some members of the MCU -- including MJ (Zendaya), Thanos (Josh Brolin), Drax (Dave Bautista), and Stellan Skarsgård’s Erik Selvig. So the actor isn’t too far off! Duners, assemble?
Stellan Skarsgård -- who is well known for his roles in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Good Will Hunting, and Mamma Mia! -- will be playing Dune’s main antagonist, Vladimir Harkonnen. He initiates a series of events that force Paul Atreides and his mother Lady Jessica to flee the planet of Arrakis, so he can take control of it. Paul then must lead a rebellion to restore control over the desert planet.
It’s an exciting project that has quickly become a highly-anticipated release with all the stars onboard -- and with the Oscar-nominated director behind Prisoners and Sicario at the helm.
Dune however doesn’t have an impressive track record of translating well to screen, because of the novel's dense content. In 1984, David Lynch adapted the film with Kyle MacLachlan as the star and it bombed at the box office and received negative reception. Even with all these talented actors, making another Dune could be a financial gamble. To Collider, Stellan Skarsgård continued with these words:
I’m just there for the ride. ... I enjoy doing the work and it’s the same with my independent films. It’s not really my problem what happens afterwards. I of course hope it’s going to turn into a good film, but it’s a lottery.
While the actor seems to understand the risk that comes with remaking Dune, he sounds eager to get started on the project that is set to begin filming this spring.
Besides all the stars who have signed on to Dune to get people excited, Denis Villenueve has also teased that the film will be like “Star Wars for adults” and he’s planning to cover the first half of the book in this movie and save the rest for planned sequels. The sci-fi movie has a release date set for November 20, 2020.