Denis Villeneuve Talks How He Identified With Dune’s Paul Atreides As A Child

Denis Villeneuve has been a long time self-professed admirer of Frank Herbert’s 1965 science fiction novel Dune. This isn’t any secret; the director had made his love clear even around the time of filming Blade Runner 2049. He read the novel when he was 13 or 14 and was instantly captivated by its epic scope and carefully constructed civilization. But most of all, he really identified with the book’s protagonist Paul Atreides, who was around his age at the time.

Villeneuve felt for the story so strongly that he would’ve agreed to make Dune if money were no object. Speaking with Empire on how Paul’s story resonated with him, he explained:

This idea of someone who has to adapt to a new world is really something that appeals to me. Paul, at the beginning, is surrounded by adults making decisions for him, and he will become an adult through that story.

Villeneuve has compared Paul’s story with Michael Corleone from The Godfather and also spoke about shooting in real locations as the issue revealed just how big can we expect the sandworms to be. All in addition to revealing a new still yesterday which came on top of another still released before.

Dune releases in theaters on Dec 18, 2020. So far, Warner Bros. hasn’t shifted its release date. It features a star-studded ensemble that includes the likes of Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista, Zendaya, David Dastmalchian, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa and Javier Bardem. Check out some hi-res stills from the movie here.