Dune’s Stellan Skarsgård spent ‘5 or 6 hours in make-up’ to become ‘huge monster’

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Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard has teased his monstrous role in the upcoming sci-fi epic Dune.

The Melancholia star will portray the villainous Baron Vladimir Harkonnen, the sworn enemy of the noble Duke Leto Atreides ( Oscar Isaac ) who replaces Harkonnen as the steward of the spice planet Arrakis.

Along with his brutish nephew Glossu Rabban ( Dave Bautista ), Harkonnen is the chief antagonist against film’s hero and Duke Leto’s messianic son, Paul Atreides ( Timothée Chalamet ).

Stellan revealed to Mirror Online that his transformation into the monstrous Harkonnen took quite a long time, being made through practical effects and make-up artistry.

“He’s fat, that was fun to do,” reveals Stellan. “It’s sort of fun to play this huge monster, but it’s less fun to spend five or six hours in make-up every day.”

Thankfully for the veteran actor, despite the importance of his role in the film, Harkonnen does not appear in a significant portion of the upcoming blockbuster.

“Fortunately, the role isn’t that big, it’s small but it has enormous weight,” laughs Stellan.

He added: “He very much does his own thing, so it’s not big, deep acting scenes with people that much.”

Stellan did add, however, that the cast were a “great bunch of people to hang with”.

The film itself is based on the seminal novel of the same name by author Frank Herbert and is directed by Blade Runner 2049 and Arrival helmer Denis Villeneuve, who the Mamma Mia star was very happy to work with.

On working with the director, Stellan said: “Working with Denis Villeneuve was fantastic, he’s such a unique creator and the atmosphere on set is extremely nice and everyone is really happy. It was just wonderful to be there.”

Dune also stars Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Zendaya, David Dastmalchian, Chang Chen, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, with Charlotte Rampling, Jason Momoa, and Javier Bardem.

A trailer for Dune will be released on Wednesday and Stellan teases that fans should get a look at his villainous character then.

Meanwhile, Skarsgard can next be seen in Holocaust drama The Painted Bird out in cinemas on Friday.

Dune will be released in cinemas on December 18, 2020.

What are you expecting from Dune? Let us know in the comments below.

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