Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Denis Villeneuve Talks Relevancy and Heritage in the Epic ‘Dune’

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(L-r) Zendaya (Chani) and Timothee Chalamet (Paul Atreides) “Dune.” Copyright: © 2021 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved. Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures

*Denis Villeneuve, director of the astounding and epic film “Dune,” was welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd at the New York Film Festival (NYFF).

“Dune,” now in theaters and streaming on HBO Max, was a selection in the Spotlight section of this year’s festival. After the screening of the film, Villeneuve and Zimmer were very forthcoming about the movie.

“I was waiting for decades to make this movie.” Yet, the film, based on Frank Herbert’s novel is as timely as ever, he noted,” an emboldened Villeneuve finally declared. “[The book] is a multi layered portrait of the 20th Century that became just more relevant as time goes by…It follows the thought process of characters…trying to find strategies to survive.

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Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Liet Kynes) © 2020 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Chiabella James

“Paul (Timothee Chalamet) was this boy struggling with a massive burden on his shoulder—family heritage, genetic heritage, religious heritage. Then him finding solace, comfort into a different culture. There was something very beautiful about those ideas that really grabbed me.”

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(L-r) Hans Zimmer, Denis Villeneuve, and NYFF Director Eugene Hernandez at Alice Tully Hall.

Zimmer also sees the film as a source of women empowerment.

“The strength, the underlying strength, and the foundation of this movie was the female characters…the female voice, the spiritual,” he stated. The sound of the film is a character within itself. You will not hear any common, ordinary music here Zimmer explained. “I loved ‘Star Wars,’ of course—it was amazing—and I’m a big fan of John Williams’ music. But as a teenager, there was that thought that came into my head—In a galaxy far, far from here, why am I hearing strings, trumpets, horns? I was thinking if we are set in a different time, in a different space, shouldn’t we have different instruments? Shouldn’t our instruments have evolved? So, we built a lot of instruments.”

“Dune” tells the story of Paul Atreides, a gifted young man born into a great destiny beyond his understanding, who must travel to the most dangerous planet in the universe to ensure the future of his family and his people. As malevolent forces explode into conflict over the planet’s exclusive supply of the most precious resource in existence—a commodity capable of unlocking humanity’s greatest potential—only those who can conquer their fear will survive.

“Dune” also stars Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Zendaya, Chang Chen, Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa, and Javier Bardem.    Twitter: @thefilmstrip

Marie Moore
Veteran syndicated journalist who covers film and television.




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