Dune: Part Two Star Javier Bardem Says Even Book Readers Will Be "Surprised" by Sequel

After exceeding viewers' expectations and winning several Academy Awards, Dune is officially coming back for more, with Warner Bros. greenlighting a sequel to Denis Villeneuve's film. The approach Villeneuve has had to adapting Frank Herbert's epic novel has been debated about at length, with diehard fans being surprised by the ways the story has unfolded onscreen so far. According to one of the film's stars, that sentiment is set to continue with the upcoming Dune: Part II. During a Q&A as part of the Cannes Film Festival, actor Javier Barden teased that the script for Dune: Part II will put the pieces of the franchise together in an unexpected way.

"I've read the new draft," Bardem revealed, "and I think they've done an amazing job of putting together the pieces in a way that is gonna surprise people. They won't be surprised [by what happens], obviously, because they've read the book, but they'll be surprised by the way they put it together. I was very moved by it. It's a movie that is full, and you can feel the weight of it, and at the same time [you can enjoy] the spectacularity of it. [I can't wait] to go back to the desert with those people, and I'm so happy to go back with Denis, who is one of the greatest directors ever. He's a lovely man."

Dune: Part Two is also expected to see the return of Timothee Chalamet as Paul Atredies, Rebecca Ferguson as Lady Jessica, Josh Brolin as Gurney Halleck, and Zendaya as Chani, with Christopher Walker playing Emperor Shaddam IV, Austin Butler playing Feyd-Rautha, Florence Pugh in negotiations to play Princess Irulan.

"We have been hearing in the past few decades that it's not possible to adapt this book, and that it's an impossible task. I think that in the back of the mind of the studio, it's still the same!" Villeneuve told Total Film in an interview last year. "So the first thing was to prove that there was a beautiful, popular movie that can exist, and I think that I proved that – everybody at Warner Bros and Legendary, they are 100 percent behind the project. They feel that it would need a really bad outcome at the box office to not have a Dune: Part Two, because they love the movie. They are proud of the movie, so they want the movie to move forward. And they still did half of it. So, you know, I'm very optimistic."

"I'm writing [Part Two] now, and I feel like I'm eight years old again," he added. "That's very uncommon for me. It's the first time I've experienced it where I'm watching one of my movies, and I have a moment of deep gratitude, of deep joy, and I say, 'Thank you, life, for having allowed me to bring that to the screen.' [laughs] I don't know how other people will feel about it. But me? Denis Villeneuve when he was 14 years old? Thank you." 

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Dune: Part 2 is currently scheduled to be released on October 20, 2023.