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Wait, Could Dune End Up As A Trilogy? Here’s What Denis Villeneuve Says

Timothee Chalamet and Rebecca Ferguson in Dune
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Since the very beginning of Denis Villeneuve’s time on Dune, the plan has been to turn the classic science fiction novel from Frank Herbert into two movies. Even though the second movie hadn’t been confirmed until very recently, the fist was always made believing the second film would happen, but now, it turns out Denis Villeneuve might not be happy making one more Dune movie. He wants to make two.

Frank Herbert originally wrote six novels in the Dune universe and Denis Villeneuve recently told EW that he has always seen these theatrical adaptations not simply as two movies telling one story, but as three movies encompassing the first two books in the series. Villeneuve says... 

I always envisioned three movies. It's not that I want to do a franchise, but this is Dune, and Dune is a huge story. In order to honor it, I think you would need at least three movies. That would be the dream. To follow Paul Atreides and his full arc would be nice. [Frank] Herbert wrote six books, and the more he was writing, the more it was getting psychedelic, so I don't know how some of them could be adapted. One thing at a time. If I ever have the chance to do Dune: Part Two and Dune Messiah, I'm blessed.

Dune Messiah followed Paul Atreides in the events after Dune, and while it isn’t Paul’s final appearance in the books, it is the last one where he is the main character, so it does largely bring his story to an end. Denis Villeneuve has the idea of finishing Paul’s story by turning the two books into a trilogy of films.

It certainly doesn’t sound like this is just a theoretical idea. Villeneuve doesn’t just think it would be cool if three movies were made, it sounds very clearly like he wants to make these movies.

And let’s be honest, if the first two Dune movies both do well in eyes of Warner Bros., it seems like the chance to do another movie will be pretty good. This is Hollywood after all, and no studio is going to say no to more movies in a universe that audiences are buying tickets to see. If Denis Villeneuve wants to make the movie and his first two movies are successful, then it seems more than likely that a third movie will happen. 

The biggest thing standing in the way of a Dune Messiah movie now is Dune Part Two. If the sequel doesn’t deliver, then it becomes less likely a third movie will happen. But if it does, it becomes likely that WB would want to make more Dune movies, whether Denis Villeneuve was involved or not.  So the fact that he is interested would make it almost a sure thing that he would be involved.

Dirk Libbey

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.