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How critical acclaim, a Gen Z outlook and a daring dress sense made Timothée Chalamet the new prince of Hollywood

This week, two of the year’s biggest films will arrive in cinemas on the same day. One is The French Dispatch, arthouse director Wes Anderson’s love letter to journalism, which follows a group of American reporters working for a literary magazine in a fictional French city. The other is Dune, Den is Villeneuve’s ambitious adaptation of the ground-breaking Frank Herbert sci-fi novel. At the centre of both films is Timothée Chalamet, the 25-year-old actor who has, in just four years, become Hollywood’s leading man.

Unusually, it wasn’t a blockbuster that catapulted Chalamet to fame, but two independent films. The first was Call Me By Your Name, the story of precocious teenager, Elio, played by Chalamet, who falls in love with an older student, Oliver (Armie Hammer), staying at his parents’ dreamy villa in the Italian countryside.

Adapted from the André Aciman novel by the dizzyingly stylish film-maker Luca Guadagnino, it was lush and lyrical, erotic and tragic, and featured a heartbreaking, career-defining turn from the then 21-year-old Chalamet. That performance would make him the youngest person nominated for the Best Actor Oscar in 80 years.

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