Timothée Chalamet is in final talks to star as Paul Atreides in Blade Runner: 2049 director Denis Villeneuve’s upcoming adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic science-fiction novel Dune.
Set in the far future, where computers have been replaced by enhanced humans called mentats and feuding feudal houses struggle for power and control of “melange,” a drug that allows its users to fold space, thus making interstellar travel possible. Melange is only found on one planet, Arrakis, whose desert climate has earned the world the nickname “Dune.” When the Emperor gives control of Arrakis to House Atreides, young nobleman Paul finds himself at the center of the deadly intriguing of galactic politics as well as possibly being a messiah foretold by the indigenous humans of Arrakis, the Fremen.
Dune has been an exceptionally tricky novel to adapt. Although it has a sprawling story that on the surface seems very cinematic, it is actually a story that concentrates very much on Paul Atreides’s interior life. In the first adaptation attempt to make it to the big screen in 1984, director David Lynch had then newcomer Kyle MacLachlan give much of this characterization through voice-over, though many found that the technique did not work all that well for the film.
Legendary has bought the rights to Herbert’s novel series in 2016. Herbert authored five sequels to the original novel and then his son Brian Herbert co-authored with Kevin J Anderson another two sequels, two trilogies of prequel novels and five additional novels set at various points across the franchise’s ten thousand year timeline.