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Why Are All Your Boyfriends in the Dune Reboot?

Actors attached to the Dune reboot.
The ‘Dune’ universe. Photo: Getty Images

Here are things I know about the upcoming movie Dune, without having Googled a Wikipedia explainer:

• It is a reboot of a film called Dune, which, if my memory serves, features Sting.
It will likely employ about half of the Internet Boyfriends currently in circulation.
• I will likely love the hell out of it, for the above reason.

That’s it, that’s all I know. Now, if you will allow me to Google the aforementioned explainer, we can continue with this story. Will you wait for me? You will? Great! Thank you! Also, you look nice today.

[hold music commences]

Okay, so, let’s get into this: According to a very helpful recap from SyFy, Dune is a book by Frank Herbert, first published in 1965. All told, there are 28 installments, written in varying chronological order by Herbert (who wrote six books), as well as his son Brian and a co-author, Kevin J. Anderson. The first book won a Hugo Award in 1966; Alejandro Jodorowsky began an adaptation attempt in 1973, and David Lynch released his version of Dune in 1984, to the near-universal chagrin of critics everywhere. (Producer Dino De Laurentiis infamously oversaw that edit, so where to place blame is hazy.) Dune is set in space, and, like most space epics, is about revolution: According to Good Reads, “Dune tells the story of young Paul Atreides (the heir apparent to Duke Leto Atreides and heir of House Atreides) as he and his family accept control of the desert planet Arrakis, the only source of the ‘spice’ melange, the most important and valuable substance in the cosmos.”

Oh, and did I mention Timothée Chalamet would be playing Paul in the upcoming Denis Villeneuve adaptation? And that Oscar Isaac would be playing his father? And that Javier Bardem, James Brolin, Charlotte Rampling, Dave Bautista, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, and Jason Momoa are all reportedly involved? And that I will be seated in the middle of the audience on opening night, popcorn in hand, ready to be beamed up, Scotty (no, wait, that isn’t right.) I will be, mostly because that cast is just … truly, a chef’s kiss of enigmatic people I have never met, likely will never meet, and whom I also care for, very much. Do I want to see Momoa and Isaac as buddy-buddies in an intergalactic space war? I do. Did I know I wanted to see this until I was informed it was possible? Not at all.

There is currently no release date for the reboot, and some of the casting decisions are still just rumors. That gives us (read: me) plenty of time to read at least the first half of Dune, which is the expanse the film will cover. That will also give the Dune fans plenty of time to explain to the rest of the world why Dune is so good; why no, actually, it is very different from Star Wars for X reason (and Y reason and … you get the idea); and why those of us finally catching up to them are just band-waggoning for the eye candy. They will not be wrong, necessarily.

But I am of the mind that, sometimes, it does not matter how you begin to love a thing so much as that you get there. Fandom is a wide and weird abyss, and people can rightfully feel protective about the things they love, and the things they’re afraid other people might not understand. But the more you welcome other people into your midst, the more of an audience there is for more of the things you love, and then more of that thing is likely to be made. Imagine: a Dune movie franchise that covers every single book (if the ice caps don’t melt and drown us all by that point.) It might very well be possible, if the demand is great enough.

I know my place in the Dune universe: it is one of thirst, one of wanting to cheer Timmy & Jason & Oscar & Javi & Zendaya on as they traverse through space and any number of totalitarian regimes. If you are here for more noble reasons, I salute and support you. Perhaps, when I know more about it, I will join you in this higher plane of thought. Until then, and until my Amazon order of Dune arrives at my apartment (Tuesday morning, baby!) I will respectfully only talk about the thing I know with absolute certainty: this movie will be the high holy court of famous people your mother thinks are “attractive” but always confuses for other famous people.

Why Are All Your Boyfriends in the ‘Dune’ Reboot?