While the upcoming remake of Dune — like so many other films in the past couple of years — has been plagued with delays, it’s starting to feel like we might finally be getting ready to return to the dunes of Arrakis. Exciting new images from the set of Dune feature Timothee Chalamet in the lead role of Paul Atreides along with many others from the film’s all-star cast.
The exclusive new images come from Total Film Magazine (via ScreenRant). There are four images in total — two images presumably from the story itself, and two behind-the-scenes shots with director Denis Villeneuve advising the cast. Below is an image of Timothee Chalamet as Paul crouching in the desert of Arrakis. Behind him is Stilgar (Javier Bardem), one of the leaders of the Fremen — those native to Arrakis. Behind Stilgar on the left is an unidentified Fremen, and on the left is Paul’s mother Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson).
Another image features Timothee Chalamet’s character in a much more regal fashion. We see Paul alongside other members of House Atreides such as his father Duke Leto (Oscar Isaac), Paul’s teacher Gurney Halleck (Josh Brolin), and master strategist Thufir Hawat (Stephen McKinley Henderson). Considering the House Atreides banners featured in the background and mountainous, forested background, this likely takes place early in the film: before the House makes its dangerous move to Arrakis.
The remaining images show Villeneuve speaking first with Timothee Chalamet for a scene in which his character is training in combat, and then a desert scene with Zendaya as Chani — the mysterious Fremen woman Paul dreams about long before meeting her.
The last of the images is of particular interest considering a recent revelation. Unlike the 1984 Dune that sought to adapt all of Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel of the same name in a single film, Villeneuve is breaking the story up into two movies. Only a couple of days ago, we learned that it will be Chani — rather than Timothee Chalamet’s Paul — who will be the protagonist for the second chapter, though Paul will still appear in the sequel.
While the film has yet to stand the test of audiences, Villeneuve’s work on Dune has apparently impressed Warner Bros. enough that they may be asking him to take a crack at another popular franchise. We learned yesterday from a trusted and proven source that Villeneuve has been offered the chance to adapt a DC Comics property to the big screen, possibly a resuscitation of Ava DuVernay’s New Gods film whose cancellation was announced in April (via Entertainment Weekly). Considering the director’s success at science fiction films like Arrival and Blade Runner 2049, it’s certainly tempting to imagine he could bring one of DC’s space-borne heroes to life. Should Timothee Chalamet’s Paul Atreides be brought to life as adeptly as it seems, it would be easy to see Villeneuve likewise crafting a film for the Martian hero J’onn J’onzz, Green Lantern, or even the jetpack-propelled Adam Strange.
Dune — starring Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, and more — is set to premiere in theaters and on HBO Max on Friday, October 22.