Filmmaker Denis Villeneuve is returning to direct the part two of his "Dune" series as Legendary and Warner Bros announced the sequel that will be released theatrically on October 20, 2023.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, lead star Timothee Chalamet will also reprise his role of Paul Atreides for the follow-up, based on author Frank Herbert in his 1965 classic novel "Dune".
Set in the distant future, "Dune" follows Paul Atreides, whose family assumes control of the desert planet Arrakis, which is the only known location of the galaxy's most vital and mind-altering mineral called "spice".
After Paul and his family are betrayed, the story explores themes of politics, religion, and man's relationship to nature, as Paul leads a rebellion to restore his family's reign.
Villeneuve, who has previously said he wanted to tell the story of "Dune" in two parts due to the complexity of the source material, expressed his gratitude to the makers for making his dream come true.
"I just received news from Legendary that we are officially moving forward with Dune: Part Two. It was a dream of mine to adapt Frank Herbert's Dune and I have the fans, the cast, and crew, Legendary and Warner Bros to thank for supporting this dream. This is only the beginning," the director said in a statement.
Villeneuve's "Dune" arrived in theatres and on WarnerMedia's streamer HBO Max simultaneously on October 22. The film earned a commendable USD 40.1 million in its domestic debut, the biggest of Villeneuve's career as well as the biggest opening of the year for Warner Bros. It was Legendary's call to move forward with a sequel or not.
Legendary said the banner is pleased to officially move forward with "Dune: Part Two".
"We would not have gotten to this point without the extraordinary vision of Denis and the amazing work of his talented crew, the writers, our stellar cast, our partners at Warner Bros, and of course the fans! Here's to more Dune," the production house said.
Toby Emmerich, chairman of Warner Bros Pictures Group, said the team is looking forward to continuing the journey of "Dune" with Villeneuve and his team.
"Denis Villeneuve has crafted a film that is both visually extraordinary and emotionally transporting, as evidenced by its global success both critically and at the box office. We are thrilled to continue on this journey with Denis and his cast and crew, and our partners at Legendary, and can't wait to bring the next chapter of this epic tale to theaters in October 2023," Emmerich added.
Villeneuve adapted the book in collaboration with Eric Roth and Jon Spaihts.
The first "Dune" also starred Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Jason Momoa, Josh Brolin and Zendaya.
The novel was previously adapted by veteran filmmaker David Lynch into a 1984 movie which made news back then for the director's frequent clashes with the producers.