Dune Taught Timothée Chalamet A Hard Skill That He Never Hopes To Use For Real

Actors have to learn to do all kinds of interesting things in order to play various roles, from accents to dance moves to various skills and hobbies. Jennifer Lawrence learned how to skin and gut a squirrel for her role in the 2010 Kentucky holler noir "Winter's Bone," for example, and the actors in James Cameron's "Avatar: The Way of Water" had to learn how to hold their breath for an extended length of time. For Denis Villeneuve's "Dune: Part One" and "Dune: Part Two," star Timothée Chalamet theoretically had to learn quite a bit, because there are many aspects of life on the desert planet Arrakis that just don't have direct Earth counterparts. It's not like he can just magically understand what it's like to be surrounded by the psychic power-giving spice, for example, but he certainly has to pretend. As his character Paul Atreides, who is destined to become the Muad'dib, a prophesied spiritual leader, Chalamet had to learn how to not only feign psychic abilities but practice hand-to-hand combat, sword-fighting, riding a giant sandworm, and more.

In an interview with USA Today, Chalamet shared some of the secrets behind the various things he had to learn for both parts of the "Dune" saga (thus far), and one of them, in particular, was a challenge that he hopes he never has to replicate in the real world: sand walking.

If you walk without rhythm...

In the interview, Chalamet discussed both the elaborate fight choreography and the unusual way of walking across sand that he had to learn in order to portray Paul. The fight choreography took months, while the walking probably took a lot less time to learn but had fewer practical applications. The "sand walk" was developed by choreographer Benjamin Millepied, best known for doing the choreography for Darren Aronofsky's "Black Swan." The walk is explained in the first film via a video Paul watches about life on Arrakis (narrated by "Dune" editor Joe Walker) as a way to try and avoid the giant sandworms that lurk beneath the surface. The walk is famously described in the Fatboy Slim song "Weapon of Choice" with the lyrics "walk without rhythm so you don't attract the worm," immortalized in the music video with Christopher Walken, who ironically stars in "Dune: Part Two."

Chalamet told USA Today that sand-walking was "one of the more challenging parts of the role." He went on to say, "I hope I won't have to use it in real life. I don't know what situation would require it, but I've got it in my toolbox of skills."

It truly is hard to imagine a situation that would require sand-walking, save for maybe rollerblading or cross-country skiing. Then again, he could always end up playing Paul again in multiple future "Dune" sequels and have to get his sand-walk on once more.