dune cast

David Dastmalchian is the latest actor to join the Dune cast. The actor made an impression in last year’s Ant-Man and the Wasp and in a supporting role in The Dark Knight, holding his own against Hollywood heavyweights like Christian Bale, Michael Douglas, and more. And he’ll continue to be in good company in Denis Villeneuve‘s ambitious (and exceedingly attractive) adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sci-fi epic.

Deadline reports that Dastmalchian is joining the Dune cast as Piter De Vries, a twisted Mentat, or “human trained to perform mental functions rivaling computers.” He’ll be joining a star-studded cast which includes Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Dave Bautista, Stellan Skarsgård, Charlotte Rampling, Javier Bardem, and Josh Brolin. Jason Momoa and Zendaya are also in talks for key roles.

Originally portrayed by Brad Dourif in David Lynch’s 1984 film Dune and by Jan Unger in the 2000 Dune miniseries, Piter De Vries is a loyal servant to the villainous Baron Vladimir Harkonnen and a character that has been “twisted” into an amoral sadist by his creators — a role that seems suited toward Dastmalchian’s talents. Dastmalchian is a scene-stealing character actor who has appeared in several notable big and small screen projects, but seems to have taken a liking to genre titles. He’s best known for his role as Kurt in the Ant-Man franchise, but his buggy eyes and frantic look first got him recognized in a small appearance in The Dark Knight in 2008. He’s also appeared in The Flash, Gotham, and MacGyver, and had a role in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks revival.

Based on the 1965 novel by Frank Herbert, Dune is “set in the distant future amidst a feudal interstellar society in which noble houses, in control of individual planets,” and “tells the story of young Paul Atreides, whose noble family accepts the stewardship of the desert planet Arrakis. As this planet is the only source of the oracular spice melange, the most important and valuable substance in the universe, control of Arrakis is a coveted—and dangerous—undertaking. The story explores the multi-layered interactions of politics, religion, ecology, technology, and human emotion, as the factions of the empire confront each other in a struggle for the control of Arrakis and its spice.”

Herbert’s sprawling, dense novel has an endless number of characters, so expect even more casting news soon.

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