There’s a ton of handsomeness already crammed into the Dune reboot, but Arrakis is a big planet. Surely there’s some space for Josh Brolin, too. The thespian now notorious for torturing both Deadpool and the Avengers (plus half of Earth) is, as per The Hollywood Reporter, in talks to play a key supporting role in a movie already packed silly with the dashing likes of Timothée Chalamet, Javier Bardem, Oscar Isaac, Dave Bautista, and Stellan Skarsgard, to say nothing of Rebecca Ferguson, Charlotte Rampling, and Zendaya.
Should the deal work out, Brolin will nab the key supporting role of Gurney Halleck — not a maniac who causes genocide with the snap of his finger but a wholly decent man. He’s the unfailingly loyal warrior in the employ of the doomed Atreides family, specifically the trainer to young scion Paul, who will be played by floppy-haired darling Chalamet. The movie will also reunite Brolin with his Sicario boss, director Denis Villeneuve, though presumably without flip-flops this time.
In David Lynch’s notorious (but secretly kind of awesome) 1984 take on Frank Herbert’s classic, Halleck was played by no less than Patrick Stewart. Whether or not Brolin will wind up growing a mullet as Stewart did in the back half of the movie remains up in the air.
The Dune novels, which Herbert began launching in 1965, have long been cherished as one of sci-fi’s most ambitious achievements, but have also proven a curse to filmmakers who’ve dared to adapt it. Cult auteur Alejandro Jodorowsky attempted a legendary version in the ’70s that would have featured Orson Welles, Mick Jagger, and Salvador Dalí; it famously crumbled in the prep stage. Lynch’s version was a major commercial and critical bomb (though completely insane). Director Peter Berg attempted his own adaptation a decade back, but that, too, failed to come together. (A pair of TV miniseries takes from the early aughts, however, was well-received.)
That Villeneuve has been able to wrangle together so many big names suggests this Dune may actually be for real. Whether it will make sense of Herbert’s universe — so complex that the first book has multiple appendixes — is another matter. (Then again, Kyle MacLachlan, star of the Lynch Dune, was able to summarize it all in one tweet.) And then there’s the important matter of who will do the score. It’s hard to top the people who did up the Lynch: Toto.