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Dune’s Josh Brolin Reacts To His Character’s Disappearance In Part One

Josh Brolin in Dune
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Although Denis Villeneuve’s Dune only adapted the first half of Frank Herbert’s 1965 novel, by the time the over-two-and-a-half-hour movie was over, there were quite a few casualties, including Oscar Isaac’s Duke Leto Atriedes and Jason Momoa’s Duncan Idaho. However, one character whose fate was left uncertain was Josh Brolin’s Gurney Halleck, as House Atreides’ weapons master was last seen running off into battle during the assault on Arrakeen. Brolin has since reacted to how his character just disappeared during the latter half of Dune

To be up front, it’s been confirmed that Gurney Halleck will return in Dune 2 (or Dune: Part Two, if you prefer), and Josh Brolin even asked his publicist to make sure his name was in the upcoming movie. On the subject of his time on the first Dune movie though, THR asked the actor if Gurney last moment was always going to be his sendoff or if that was more of an editorial choice. Brolin responded:

I can’t answer that. I don’t know. I mean, I think the book suggests that, but the book suggests a lot of things. The book suggests his singing, and even though that was something that we actually did, we didn’t use it. And that’s a major, major thing with Gurney. So having just read the second one about two weeks ago, I now know why that [sendoff] was the way it was. But it’s hard for me to answer that because when Denis is making these choices and having these dreams, talk about immersion, man. The guy gets lost in what he’s doing, completely. I’ve learned, especially as a producer, that post is just as important, if not more important, than what you’ve actually filmed. So I think it was a good place [to leave Gurney]. When I watched it, I was like, ‘Where did I go?’ I think that was the first reaction. ‘That’s it?’ But that was all selfish.

So Josh Brolin was just as surprised as viewers unfamiliar with the source material about where Denis Villeneuve’s Dune left off with Gurney Halleck, and at the time, no one clued him in on why his character was handled this way. However, having recently read the Dune 2 script, Brolin understands why Halleck was sent off in such a manner, though he’s still not entirely sure how the decision was reached during the process of stitching the first movie together. In any case, at least Brolin can take comfort knowing that he’ll be playing Halleck again, as opposed to his fate never being cleared up. As for what will happen to him in the next movie, well, you’ll either need to wait for its arrival or read the original Dune novel.

Now that Dune has premiered to the masses and gone on to win six Oscars (Josh Brolin is still upset that Denis Villenueve didn’t get a Best Director nomination), it’s time to look to Dune 2, which will begin filming this summer. Brolin joked about he and Javier Bardem needing to get back in shape for the sequel, but he’s clearly excited about getting to return to this cinematic world. Other actors returning for Dune include Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Stellan Skarsgård and Dave Bautista. So far three new actors have been announced for the sequel: Black Widow’s Florence Pugh as Princess Irulan, Elvis’ Austin Butler as Feyd-Rautha and Severance’s Christopher Walken as Emperor Shaddam IV.

Dune 2 comes out on October 23, 2023, and CinemaBlend will continue providing updates on its progress. Denis Villenueve’s first Dune movie can still be watched with an HBO Max subscription, and the filmmaker has also expressed interest in rounding out his run on the sci-fi property by making a Dune: Messiah movie.

Adam Holmes
Adam Holmes

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.