Dune: Part Two | Tim Blake Nelson “heartbroken” about his character being cut from the film

Tim Blake Nelson Dune
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Actor Tim Blake Nelson had a mystery role in Dune: Part Two, only for his scenes to be excised from Denis Villeneuve’s final cut.

Denis Villeneuve’s swooning space epic Dune: Part Two takes in a quite staggering cast of characters, and much of the film’s marketing in the run up to its release has pivoted on an array of stars, including Timothee Chalamet, Zendaya, Florence Pugh, Austin Butler, and many more besides.

One name you won’t see in the credits, however, is Tim Blake Nelson, an actor known for his roles in – among other things – O Brother Where Art Thou and Nightmare Alley. According to Nelson, speaking to MovieWeb, he also had a role in Dune: Part Two, but the scene was left out of the final cut.

Nelson said that his character was left out because director Denis Villeneuve wanted to avoid making the film too long, and added that he was “heartbroken” over the decision.

“I don’t think I’m at liberty to say what the scene was,” Nelson said. “I’d leave that to Denis [Villeneuve] if he wants to talk about it. I had a great time over there shooting it. And then he had to cut it because he thought the movie was too long. And I am heartbroken over that, but there’s no hard feelings. I loved it, and I can’t wait to do something else with him and we certainly plan to do that.”

Who might Nelson have played? Over at The Hollywood Reporter, there’s speculation that his role was Count Hasimir Fenring, the husband of Lady Fenring (played by Lea Seydoux in Villeneuve’s film). Hasimir is also “one of the deadliest fighters in the Imperium,” according to the original Dune novel, and Emperor Shaddam IV’s “only real friend.”

This likely means that Nelson would have shared a scene with Christopher Walken, who plays a distinctly brooding version of said emperor in Villeneuve’s adaptation – if so, that’d at least partly explains why Nelson finds his removal from the scene such a wrench.

Another character that didn’t make the cut, also noted by The Hollywood Reporter, was Stephen McKinley’s Thufir Hawat, a Mentat – essentially a human computer – previously seen in Dune: Part One. As Villeneuve was preparing the film, though, he decided that the angle of his story was on the Bene Gesserit rather than the Mentats, so Hawat was quietly left out.

As Dune: Part Two enjoys a (sand) storming first weekend at the box office, though, it’s looking increasingly likely that Dune: Messiah will get a green light. If so, it’s possible we’ll see Tim Blake Nelson’s Hassimir finally make an appearance in the saga’s next chapter.

Read more: Dune: Part Two is all about the women

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