‘Dune 2’ Star Dave Bautista Almost Wasn’t Cast in ‘Blade Runner 2049’: ‘I’m Sorry, but You’re Just All Wrong’ | Video

The actor shares how thrilled he was when director Denis Villeneuve called to offer him his latest role

“Dune 2” is already on track to a victorious debut after the film earned $32 million through Friday. On Friday night, actor Dave Bautista, who plays Glossu Rabban in the first and second installments of the epic science-fiction tale, told “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon that he was “emotional” when director Denis Villeneuve offered him the role. But Villeneuve wasn’t always such a big fan of Bautista.

The actor said that he wasn’t Villeneuve’s first choice for the role of Sapper Morton in “Blade Runner 2049.” Even though the movie’s producers were rooting for him, they didn’t want to make Villeneuve cast him, so Bautista had to “really win him over.”

“I had to work really hard to work with Denis the first time in ‘Blade Runner 2049,’” Bautista said. “I had to audition, and screen test, and makeup test, and really win him over.”

“Because the first time I met him for that role, he was like, ‘You know, I’m sorry, but you’re just all wrong for this role,’” Bautista said. “But the producers wanted me, but they didn’t want to try to force Denis into it. So I get like test after test after test, until I finally won his approval and he hired me.”

Even though everything worked out well for “Blade Runner 2049,” Bautista didn’t want to push Villeneuve about “Dune.” He continued, “And then for ‘Dune,’ we had been tracking it, because we knew it was going to happen and I wanted to be a part of it. But I didn’t want to hit Denis up and ask him personally, because I’m just not that guy.”

Bautista described the moment Villeneuve called to offer him the “Dune” role.

“So I was on another film and he actually called me and he said, ‘Hey, I’m doing this film’ — like I’m not supposed to know what it is. He’s like, ‘I’m doing this film,’ and I’m like dying inside, sweating,” Bautista said. He shared that Villeneuve told him,”‘I had this part, the character is the Beast Rabban,’ and I knew exactly who he was. And he said, ‘Now, I would really love you to come play this part.’”

“I was like, I literally walked around in circles. I was on the phone walking around in circles, because I didn’t know what to do with myself,” Bautista told Fallon. “I was so emotional and so taken aback.”

Fallon joked that Bautista couldn’t let Villeneuve know that, but the actor shot back, “I did,” adding, “I ain’t afraid! I am that guy. Like, I wear my heart on my sleeve. I love somebody, I tell them I love them. I don’t hold back, and if something means something to me, I let them know.”

“This is a big deal to me,” Bautista said. “This was very validating to me.”

Elsewhere on the show, Fallon and Bautista performed tin the latest edition of the host’s signature “Ew!” teen girl sketch. Fallon transformed into his character Sara and introduced Bautista, who was decked out in a glittery top and carrying a tiny pink purse, as his “bestie, literally my ride or die, Gabby Morales.”

The pair discussed how everything was going (“Life’s like, whatever, and stuff,” Bautista explained) and spring break. Their first “ew” was in response to Bautisa’s plans. “My mom’s making me to go circus camp and stuff,” he explained as Fallon yelled, “Ew!” Bautista added, “Criiiinge.”

After Bautista’s character said that the camp will also include learning a trapeze routine to Beyonce’s “Texas Hold ‘Em,” Fallon suggested they perform the song’s dance together until they are rudely (and so grossly, ew) interrupted by Sara’s stepdad, Gary.

The Roots’ Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter also joined Fallon in a Beastie Boys-esque rap to teach everyone how to spell Bautista’s name. It may be a bit difficult for those who were fans of the actor in his pro wrestling days — they simplified the spelling at that time to “Batista.”

Watch the spelling rap here:

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