‘Dune’ Trailer: Timothée Chalamet Navigates a Desert Wasteland in Sci-Fi Epic (Video)

Denis Villeneuve’s film based on Frank Herbert’s classic novel opens December 18

Last Updated: September 9, 2020 @ 9:22 AM

In the first look at “Dune,” Timothée Chalamet takes a big step up to the blockbuster stage as the lead in Denis Villeneuve’s ambitious adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic science fiction novel.

This first full look shows Chalamet navigating a massive, sprawling and dense galactic desert — and an even denser sci-fi plot — for what fans of “Dune” are hoping will be the first proper film adaptation of the novel.

“Fear is the mind killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration,” Chalamet says solemnly in a teaser. “I will face my fear, and I will permit it to pass over me. When the fear is gone, there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

In Villeneuve’s version, the “Call Me By Your Name” and “Lady Bird” star Chalamet takes up the role of Paul Atreides, a member of a wealthy family sent away from his homeworld to the desolate planet Arrakis, where he’s meant to oversee the extraction of a spice vital to the galaxy. Though he’s already reluctant to leave, little does he know about the dangers that await him, including giant sandworms and a tribe of humans known as the Fremen that manage to live among the scorching terrain.

Villeneuve has assembled an impressive cast for the Warner Bros. epic, including Josh Brolin, Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Jason Momoa, Javier Bardem, Stellan Skarsgård, Charlotte Rampling, Chang Chen, Stephen McKinley Henderson and Dave Bautista. It’s his first film since the equally ambitious and visually daring “Blade Runner 2049” from 2017. Villeneuve also co-wrote the screenplay with Eric Roth and Jon Spaihts based on Herbert’s novel from 1965.

The legacy and impact of “Dune” has been seen in everything from “Star Wars” to “Alien.” And several filmmakers have tried to realize Herbert’s full vision. Experimental filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky had an ambitious vision back in the ’70s that was chronicled in the documentary “Jodorowsky’s Dune.” Then David Lynch adapted the film with star Kyle MacLachlan in 1984, but it was a box office dud and a critical disappointment for the auteur filmmaker. And a miniseries on what is now the SyFy network starring William Hurt was also a hit back in 2000.

But in an earlier interview with Vanity Fair, Villeneuve said he hopes to have captured the vision that has existed only in the imaginations of fans.

Despite the many shifts to the release calendar because of the coronavirus, Warner Bros. and Legendary are still planning on releasing “Dune” in theaters on Dec. 18, 2020. Oscar Isaac revealed a while back that the cast of the film even returned to Budapest last month to finish additional pick-up shooting.

“I saw some things cut together and it just looks amazing. Denis is a real artist and it will be exciting to see it come together,” Isaac said on a panel discussion for his film “The Card Counter. “It’s kind of wild that we’re doing some additional shooting a few months before it’s supposed to come out, but that happened with ‘Star Wars’ as well.”

Watch the first trailer for “Dune” above and a Q&A conversation that Stephen Colbert did on behalf of the film with the cast below: