Dune | Denis Villeneuve will make a trilogy and no more

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After Dune: Part Two, Denis Villeneuve will potentially make Dune Messiah, but won’t continue making further entries, the director has said.

After a lengthy delay, director Denis Villeneuve’s much-anticipated Dune: Part Two is only a month away. And as the sci-fi follow-up to 2021’s Dune readies for release, Villeneuve has talked about his interest in making a third film – an adaptation of novelist Frank Herbert’s Dune Messiah – and how he’s happy to end his involvement in the saga there.

Herbert’s operatic space fantasy continued for five further novels after the seminal Dune, published in 1965, while his son Brian and other authors continued the narrative in a string of other books after he author’s passing in 1986. But while there’s a veritable sea of books and stories to draw from in future movies, Villeneuve seemed content to move onto other projects after the completion of Dune Messiah.

Speaking to Time magazine, the director simply said, “Dune Messiah should be the last Dune movie for me.”

Nor will he necessarily make Dune Messiah next; Warner Bros hasn’t greenlit the second sequel in any case, and is likely waiting to see what the box office returns are like for this year’s Part Two. Instead, Villeneuve has other projects in various stages of development, including a Cleopatra film – which Time reveals is being written by 1917 screenwriter Krysty Wilson Cairns – as well as an adaptation of Arthur C Clarke’s sci-fi epic, Rendezvous With Rama, which is being adapted by the eminent Eric Roth.

“I don’t know exactly when I will go back to Arrakis,” Villeneuve previously said at a press conference. “I might make a detour before just to go away from the sun. For my mental sanity I might do something in between.”

Both Timothée Chalamet and Zendaya have separately expressed their enthusiasm for returning for Dune Messiah, which, let’s face it, isn’t too surprising.

Dune Part Two is out in UK cinemas on the 1st March.

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