With estimates pegging Dune Part I at around $35 million domestic for its opening weekend, it exceeded expectations at $41 million. The globals are at $223 million with some key territories still to go.  Variety reports Dune was watched by more than 1.9 million households from Thursday to Sunday. That’s above the 1.8 million of Zack Snyder’s Justice League. So without further delay, Legendary Pictures has now officially greenlit Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part II.

The company made the announcement on Twitter, because that is where everything gets done these days:

Dune-part-ii

The second movie is expected to score a theatrical exclusive run, no HBO Max day-and-date release. It is penciled in for October 2023, a break of two years after the original.

The new film will adapt the second half to two-thirds of Frank Herbert’s massive novel. This will focus on Paul Atreides’ life with the Fremen, his journey to fulfill his destiny and, of course, the coming war. Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen and Emperor Shaddam IV will be required to appear. The Spacing Guild, navigators, and the other great houses will also be in play as we find out more about the giant sandworms of Arrakis.

There were rumors of Feyd’s casting a couple of years ago when production was underway. Any tweets and stories quickly went away. Maybe there was something in them?

Dune Part II will have a lot of heavy lifting to do in order to build out the world, as the middle third of the novel is quite cerebral before the scope and scale explode wide once again.

The ensemble cast is expected to return. Well, those that made it to the end of Dune Part I, that is. There must be something in the form of a retaining contract and an outline production plan with placeholders in their schedules. Otherwise reassembling that cast and crew again so quickly would present a challenge.

So, will you return to Arrakis with them for Dune Part II?

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