‘Blade Runner 2049’ director Denis Villeneuve takes the helm of the latest big-screen adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic sci-fi bestseller, and it looks dark, brooding and utterly inviting.
I’ll be the first to admit, since picking up Frank Herbert’s seminal science fiction classic, “Dune,” when I was 11 years old, I’ve never been able to finish it. Over the course of several decades when I actually read for pleasure and not to feed my anxiety regarding the fate of mankind, I tried picking up the tome again several times, always at the urging of friends lamenting my lack of taste, insight and intelligence based on my unenthusiastic take on what may be the best selling sci-fi book of all time. Tim Burton’s stop-motion sandworms notwithstanding, I’ve never enjoyed the weighty book, the sequels, or Hollywood’s various takes on the property.
However, watching Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures’ new trailer for Denis Villeneuve’s upcoming Dune feature film, I must admit, I was mesmerized. It’s dark, brooding, suspenseful… it has Drax, Aquaman and Poe Dameron… and it looks fantastic! Two-time Oscar winner Paul Lambert takes the reigns as production VFX supervisor, with visual effects production in the hands of DNEG, under VFX Supervisors Tristan Myles and Brian Connor, and Territory Studio. Villeneuve has also reteamed with two-time Oscar-nominated production designer Patrice Vermette (Arrival, Sicario, The Young Victoria), and Oscar-winning special effects supervisor Gerd Nefzer (Blade Runner 2049). Oscar-winning and multiple Oscar-nominated composer Hans Zimmer (Blade Runner 2049, Inception, Gladiator, The Lion King) is handling the score.
Dune tells the story of Paul Atreides, a brilliant and gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the universe to ensure the future of his family and his people. As malevolent forces explode into conflict over the planet’s exclusive supply of the most precious resource in existence—a commodity capable of unlocking humanity’s greatest potential—only those who can conquer their fear will survive.
Yes, there will be sandworms.
The film has an incredible cast, including Oscar nominee Timothée Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name, Little Women), Rebecca Ferguson (Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep, Mission: Impossible – Fallout), Oscar Isaac (the Star Wars franchise) Oscar nominee Josh Brolin (Milk, Avengers: Infinity War), Stellan Skarsgård (HBO’s Chernobyl, Avengers: Age of Ultron), Dave Bautista (the Guardians of the Galaxy films, Avengers: Endgame), Stephen McKinley Henderson (Fences, Lady Bird), Zendaya (Spider-Man: Homecoming, HBO’s Euphoria), David Dastmalchian (Blade Runner 2049, The Dark Knight), Chang Chen (Mr. Long, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Netflix’s Sex Education), with Oscar nominee Charlotte Rampling (45 Years, Assassin’s Creed), with Jason Momoa (Aquaman, HBO’s Game of Thrones), and Oscar winner Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men, Skyfall).
The Oscar-nominated Villeneuve (Arrival, Blade Runner 2049) directs from a screenplay he co-wrote with Jon Spaihts and Eric Roth based on the novel of the same name written by Frank Herbert. Villeneuve also produced the film with Mary Parent, Cale Boyter and Joe Caracciolo, Jr. The executive producers are Tanya Lapointe, Joshua Grode, Herbert W. Gains, Jon Spaihts, Thomas Tull, Brian Herbert, Byron Merritt and Kim Herbert.
The film is slated to be released in theaters on December 18, 2020.
Source: Warner Bros. Entertainment
Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.