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19 Interesting And Amazing Facts About "Dune" That Make The Movie 100x Cooler

A dune of dope facts.

Denis Villeneuve's Dune is set to bring Frank Herbert's novel to life. Whether you're new to the lore, or a longtime fan, this film looks to be an epic generational staple for the future.

1. The movie is based on the first half of a stellar science fiction novel, Dune. It was written by Frank Herbert and came out in 1965.

Frank Herbert attends the 1984 "Dune" premiere.

2. The title comes from the sand dunes on the beach near Florence, Oregon.

A sandy and grassy beach.

3. Denis Villeneuve wanted to make the film with strong female characters. The screenwriter Eric Roth asked him, "What would be the most important thing that we should bring upfront in this adaptation?” He answered, "Women."

4. The character of Dr. Kynes was modified in the movie. In the books, Dr. Kynes is a white male, but in the movie, Dr. Kynes is a Black woman.

Dr, Kynes standing in a desert.

5. It took three and a half years and approximately $165 million to make this movie.

6. Making the Dune movie was a longstanding dream of Villeneuve. In fact, he wanted to make this movie ever since he first read the book when he was 14 years old.

Villeneuve looking into the camera.

7. The successful direction of Arrival and Blade Runner 2049 gave Villeneuve confidence that he was experienced enough to tackle an ambitious project like Dune.

Villeneuve in a black blazer.

8. While working on Blade Runner 2049 with Zimmer, Villeneuve talked about his teenage dream of making a Dune film, and Zimmer immediately hopped on as he, too, was a big fan of the book.

Rick Deckard in "Blade Runner 2049."

9. Hans Zimmer is such a big fan of the book that he declined to work on Tenet with his longtime collaborator Christopher Nolan and chose to score Dune.

Hans Zimmer smiles.

10. Hans Zimmer has also composed a second soundtrack for the movie. He wrote original music for The Art and Soul of Dune, a making-of book written by the movie’s executive producer, Tanya Lapointe.

Hans Zimmer at a movie premiere.

11. Dune's cinematographer, Greig Fraser, won an Emmy for The Mandalorian. He is also working on the upcoming superhero flick The Batman.

Greig Fraser in a grey blazer.

12. Denis Villeneuve didn't conduct auditions for the role of Paul Atreides. He handpicked Timothée Chalamet for the role.

Timotee Chamalet poses for the camera.

13. As soon as Chalamet got a whiff that the Dune movie was finally happening, he set up a Google alert for the movie and then went to Cannes to meet Villeneuve.

Timotee Chamalet shows off his fashion.

14. Josh Brolin, who worked with Villeneuve on Sicario, signed up without reading the script. “I think I pretended to read it” is how Brolin recalls things.

Josh Brolin in a black suit.

15. The production designer of Dune, Patrice Vermette, used Google Earth to shortlist locations for shooting the scenes set on the desert planet Arrakis. Deserts in Iran, Chad, Mauritania, and Libya were some of the locations shortlisted.

Patrice Vermette poses for a picture.

16. They finally settled on the famous Wadi Rum valley in Jordan (which was also the shooting location for Lawrence of Arabia and The Martian).

A rocky landscape in a desert.

17. But Wadi Rum posed a new problem. It lacked dunes! So the crew "collected samples of sand from Jordan in water bottles so they could match its color to another location." This brought them to the vast and desolate desert of Rub’ al Khali in Abu Dhabi.

Car driving through Rub al Khali Desert (Empty Quarter - Abu Dhabi - United Arab Emirates)

18. The set of the movie was built at Origo Studios outside Budapest. It was so large that Rebecca Ferguson kept getting lost.

Rebecca Ferguson in a black gown.

19. The movie had its official world premiere at the Venice Film Festival, where it received a mind-blowing seven-minute standing ovation.