Call Timothée Chalamet by another name: the theatergoing defender.
During the closing moments of his debut “Saturday Night Live” episode, the “Dune” star made his allegiances in the recent Warner Bros. and HBO Max shake-up abundantly clear.
Chalamet bid the audience adieu while wearing a dark hoodie displaying the Legendary Entertainment logo, the production company behind the upcoming adaptation of the sci-fi classic that was reportedly blindsided by Warner Bros.’ decision to release the film directly on HBO Max alongside a theatrical run.
The actor, however, let his hoodie do most of the talking, instead offering some brief remarks about kindness in his final moments on stage.
“I guess I could say one thing is treat others with kindness. And you know, we’ve all been through a crazy year. That can be something that sounds corny,” he said. “But it’s true, we could all do a little bit of kindness. Every little gesture counts.”
Chalamet was initially booked to appear on the late night sketch series to promote the release of “Dune,” which has since been pushed back to October 2021 after multiple delays.
Warner Bros. announced earlier this month that “Dune” and its entire 2021 theatrical slate will debut on the streaming service the same day each premieres in theaters in an industry-shaking move due to the ongoing effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
The unprecedented shift sent shock waves through Hollywood, with a handful of directors since expressing concern about how the hybrid release model could change how movies are released and screened.
Legendary Entertainment, which co-produced and co-financed “Dune” and “Godzilla vs. Kong,” two films affected by the Warner Bros. decision, are now reportedly considering legal action against the distributor, as the company wasn’t consulted before the streaming release plan was announced.
Although Chalamet didn’t speak up about his stance, his sweatshirt statement suggested that he supports “Dune” director Denis Villeneuve, who wrote in a blistering open letter in Variety last week that Warner Bros. has shown “absolutely no love for cinema, nor for the audience.”
“Warner Bros.’ sudden reversal from being a legacy home for filmmakers to the new era of complete disregard draws a clear line for me,” Villeneuve wrote, adding that he learned about the release plan by reading the news. “Filmmaking is a collaboration, reliant on the mutual trust of teamwork and Warner Bros. has declared they are no longer on the same team.”
The French-Canadian director said he feared that the move might have killed future sequels for “Dune,” which he described as the “best movie” he’s ever made, as the film “won’t have the chance to perform financially in order to be viable and piracy will ultimately triumph.”
Chalamet stars in the much-anticipated adaptation of Frank Herbert’s 1965 space opera as Paul Atreides alongside an A-list cast of co-stars, including Zendaya, Oscar Isaac, Josh Brolin, Rebecca Ferguson and Jason Momoa.