Dune is still two months away, but that isn’t stopping director Denis Villeneuve from thinking about the franchise’s future. Seeing as how Frank Herbert’s original novel covers a period of several years, the story doesn’t exactly lend itself to one single film adaptation. Fortunately, we’ve known for a while that Villeneuve is planning to split the book into two movies. But it sounds like the fate of any potential follow-ups rests entirely on Dune’s box-office performance.
Villeneuve addressed Dune’s franchise potential during a recent interview with Total Film (via GamesRadar). Obviously, the movie is coming out at a precarious time. And because of its simultaneous release on HBO Max, there may be less incentive for fans to see it in theaters. Regardless, Villeneuve doesn’t seem intimidated by this (which is surprising, given his initial opposition to this release model).
“So the first thing was to prove that there was a beautiful, popular movie that can exist,” said Villeneuve. “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.”
In the meantime, Villeneuve is currently toiling away on the script for the second film, and he sounds plenty excited about the writing process so far.
“I’m writing [Part Two] now, and I feel like I’m eight years old again,” added Villeneuve. “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.”
Dune hits theaters and HBO Max on October 22.
Are you excited about Villeneuve’s plans for the expanding Dune universe? Let us know in the comments down below!
Recommended Reading: Dune (Penguin Galaxy)
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