Denis Villeneuve's Dune had one of the most impressive casts of any film released in 2021, so when a sequel was announced, fans wondered when the project could see the star-studded cast return for production, with the filmmaker recently noting that the script for the project has been finished, though will likely earn tweaks until the film has been completed. Despite how much was riding on the success of the first film, Villeneuve also noted how, in some ways, there is an added pressure for this sequel to honor the source material to the degree that the debut film accomplished. Dune: Part Two is expected to hit theaters on October 20, 2023.
"The screenplay is finished mostly, but it's always a work in progress," Villeneuve confirmed with Collider. "It'll be a work in progress until final cut, but I will say it's solidified. I have a script in my hands. We are in prep right now."
As for the pressure he feels while developing this follow-up film, Villeneuve confessed, "The first one, it was more to make sure that we will land in the world and that the movie will be accepted. Now it's to make sure that we can close that first book, so it's like there's some premises that are in the first movie that I need to ignore. So yeah, I think I would say there's more pressure with the second one in some ways."
The original Frank Herbert Dune novel is one of the most beloved sci-fi tomes in history, with expectations being high among fans for how Villeneuve would bring the concept to life. The sprawling nature of the narrative has made previous adaptations struggle in the past, with the filmmaker opting to only partially adapt the novel, allowing a second film to close out the narrative. However, the coronavirus pandemic first saw Dune delayed, only for Warner Bros. to opt to release its entire 2021 slate on HBO Max the same day they landed in theaters.
Villeneuve was one of the most vocal critics of this decision, noting that the opportunity to helm a sequel was dependent upon the financial success of this first outing. Luckily, the film proved to be enough of a financial and critical success for Warner Bros. to move forward with the second half of the story to complete the narrative.
Dune: Part Two is expected to hit theaters on October 20, 2023.
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