Warner Bros. has shifted its release date for Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation of Dune, bumping it from its original release date of November 20th, 2020 to December 18th, 2020. The film is the latest adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic 1965 science fiction novel, set on a desert planet in a feudal galaxy.
Along with the news, Warner Bros. says that the film will get an IMAX release. The new date will take up the slot that Disney’s typically released its Star Wars films, ensuring that science fiction fans will get another big space opera blockbuster that month.
Villeneuve comes to the film with an impressive track record when it comes to science fiction, first with his first contact film Arrival, and with Blade Runner 2049. The project is expected to encompass two films, according to Legendary Entertainment CEO Joshua Grode, which Herbert’s son Brian backed up, saying that the first screenplay roughly covered the first half of the novel. Already, we’ve seen a steady drip of casting news, revealing a spectacular cast for the project.
Villeneuve’s film is the latest take on the novel. David Lynch famously directed an adaptation in 1984 that’s gone on to achieve cult status, and the SCI FI channel produced a miniseries and a sequel in 2000 and 2003.
The story follows a noble house, the Atreides, as they’re given control of the desert planet Arrakis. The planet is the only known source of melange (spice), a drug that enhances human mental abilities, and makes space travel possible. When the family is overthrown by the rival Harkonnen house, Paul Atreides flees and is taken in by nomads known as the Fremen. He becomes their messianic leader, and works to lead a revolution on the planet to overthrow the Harkonnens. Herbert went on to write several sequels, while his son continued the series with a sprawling series that continued to expand and explore the world.
Updated August 3rd, 2019 9:01AM ET: This article and headline has been updated with word that Warner Bros. has shifted the film from November to December.