15 April 2020

FWS News Feed: DUNE 2020 First Official Images!

 Since 1984, I've been a fan of DUNE. The David Lynch film was released when I was eight, and I was mesmerized by the haunting beauty of DUNE. I was one of those odd kids that bought the toys and collected books and comics about the world of 10,191. When I was a freshmen in high school, I read all of the 6 DUNE novels back-to-back. To this day, I love the novel DUNE and remains my favorite novel of all time. However, my favorite novel of the series is God Emperor of Dune. While there have several attempts at bring DUNE to the small and big screen, only three have been successful and there are high hopes that Denis Villeneuve's is the most well-rounded. While I enjoyed the Sci-Fi Channel miniseries and the David Lynch 1984 epic, I am very hopeful for Denis Villeneuve's 2-part stab at the 1965 classic and given the images that were released this week, my hopes are soaring. Here is my comments on the released images thus far...

This is the 23 year old actor Timothée Chalamet in his role as Paul Atreides on his homeworld of Caladan, the seat of power for House Atreides. This may be taken during the packing up of House Atreides from Caladan to Arrakis. Love this image and it sets the right tone for the pre-Paul Muad'Dib days. Interestingly, Timothee is one year older than Kyle MacLachlan was when he earned the role as Paul Atreides.

This 23 year old model/singer Zendaya as Chani and while I do not know who she is, and I am impressed by the image. She has the right look as Chani. Hoping for big things from her in one of the most vital characters in Paul's life.

 This is a group shot of the House Atreides main players and the photo is too dark to see much...

 Here is the man himself, Director Denis Villeneuve with one of the best actors working today, Javier Bardem, in his stillsuit as the leader Silgar. Excited by this casting decision. Bardem was wonderful in Skyfall.
 Here is Josh Brolin as Gurney Halleck, one of the key teachers to Paul and man with a heavy past. While I like Brolin in some roles, I will be waiting to see if he can pull off the complexity of Gurney. Oddly, Bardem and Brolin were in No Country for Old Men. What is seen in this shot, is the knife and armor of the House Atreides. Due to DUNE being set in a feudal style of government across the known universe, I image the decision was give the warriors of the Great Houses armor, like European Knights. While this is okay, it is dangerously close to the horror show that the costumes for the Sci-Fi Channel miniseries was...
Here is former X-Wing pilot Oscar Isaac in the role of the great
Duke Leto Atreides and Rebecca Ferguson as Lady Jessica Atreides. There needs to be solid chemistry between this two to pull of a grand and deep love that altered the Known Universe and the development of the human race. 

 Here is the role that I very hopeful about due to the skill and intensity of  Jason Mamoa. Duncan Idaho is important figure in the DUNE universe and lives on for thousands of years after his death defending the Lady Jessica and the young Duke Paul.
 Here is Sharon Duncan-Brewster as the Judge of the Change and the Imperial planetologist/ecologist of Arrakis Liet Kynes. He was also the secret leader of the Fremen people on the DL. While gender-switching is commonplace in works today, like Starbuck being a women in BSG, some of the elements of Fremen culture and the role of women makes this odd, unless, they've altered elements of that as well. I will wait to see how this will work.


  1. Thanks for the infos! Happy to see Rebecca Ferguson in this role. She really has good acting skills and presence. The other actors too seem to fit their characters, especially the young Paul Atreides. Let's hope this movie goes well.

    I didn't know much about BSG, just saw the serie quite some time ago ; to my side, it didn't bother me seeing a woman in the role of Starbuck, this character played by Kara Thrace was among my favorites in this serie.

  2. Shai-Hulud! May his passing cleanse the world! I too have high hopes for this one, and I found the Sci-Fi Channel miniseries enjoyable, while the classic David Lynch 1984 film was more of a visionary feast it's spirit was off from my read of the books. I do hope this one connects all the dots....we shall see

  3. When I known that Jason Momoa will be Duncan Idaho, I was a bit sceptical. But when I saw the image, it was: "Oh my god! He is the only and true Duncan!". Phisicaly, he resembles the character as I imagined him during the reading of the books.

  4. Oh my, Oscar look great as duke Leto.

  5. Initially, I was ecstatic as I had finished a copy of Dune some years ago. However, I am hesitant in my hype when word came out with Villeneuve's "creative licensing" with the original themes of the novel.

    As for the armor, while I don't recall any mention of armor in my initial reading of the novel, it may be a more plausible way of explaining how the Holtzman Shield is deployed on the infantry level, or at least for those with a high enough social standing to want an added level of backup protection for those slow penetrations.

    Now if only they could work out a way so that Lasgun bolt meeting Holtzman Shield doesn't randomly make either or both go atomic....

  6. The costuming for the Atreides makes them look like petty officers from Babylon5. Galactic rulers would have better gear don't you think? I'll approve if they give Linda Hunt a role/decent cameo.

  7. My main fear is that like so many other recent sci fi franchises, they try to go the pandering social justice route with this and end up inserting a bunch of 2020 political BS into it that nobody outside of Hollywood and academia wants.

    I dont know much about Villeneuve but I read that he will be executive producer and director of the first episode of "Dune: The Sisterhood" which will be an HBO show and looks like it could unfortunately be some "smash the patriarchy" Dune series. Really hoping I'm wrong about this but with all the attempts at directors hamfistedly shoving their woke politics into other peoples IP, I've got some hesitation about getting my hope's up.

  8. There are a great deal of hard choices on how to approach topics within the 21st century through the lens of the classic franchises. Trek and Wars have a rocky history of late and DUNE is unlike any of them. Sci-Fi since its earliest days with HG Wells have taken issues in society and presented in a new way to prompt thought. That has to be balanced with solid writing. That is sorely lacking now with the new Trek and new Wars works. I am worried as well about how DUNE will be presented, but I have faith in the director, his work on Blade Runner 2049 was amazing and it was a better film that the original. I guess we shall see...

  9. As far as Liet Kynes, the only noteworthy thing about his gender in the novel was that he was Chani's father by an (unnamed) Fremen mother.

    Considering how the Fremen feel about their Reverend Mothers (such as Lady Jessica becomes), having Liet Kynes being Chani's mother by an (unnamed) Fremen father isn't likely to upset the balance of the Dune universe.

    clear ether


  10. Image wise, Villeneuve's Dune looks impressive. The stillsuits give a slight nod to Lynch's Dune, but appear more grounded and functional. As for Atreides uniforms and body armor, I'd say that it points to a future where things are expected to be used, and used hard. I have no doubt that we'll see some batshit crazy 10th Millenium haute couture, but it won't be out in the bled or on the battlefield.

    Perhaps the smartest thing about this effort is that the plan is to cover the first novel in TWO films, therefore allowing more time and attention to be paid to important things like plot and storyline.