The Reason Behind Dune Part One’s Solo Production
The Warner Bros. who took such a great gamble twenty years ago is not the same studio today. Instead, the model for Dune is from Stephen King It, which was also split into two films in 2017 and 2019. When the first It came out, there was no guarantee there would be a sequel. It was thanks to the incredible box office success of the first film that It: Chapter Two was immediately pushed into production.
However, there are notable differences between It and Dune. Stephen King remains a viable brand name in the 21st century, even if his books don’t quite have the publishing power they had in the 1980s, when It was written. By contrast, Frank Herbert, who died in 1986, is less known to non-genre readers, despite an ongoing series of Dune novels co-authored by his son. The first It had a modest budget of $35 million, while Villeneuve’s Dune is estimated to be at least $165 million, if not more. And while the first It featured a cast of relatively unknown child actors, Dune features an all-star ensemble that includes Oscar Isaac, Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Jason Momoa, Zendaya, Javier Bardem, and more.
The other difference – and this is the only one that might help Dune in the long run – is that the first? It film arguably told a complete story. King’s massive novel took place in two separate timelines, with King alternating between them; the movie just took the timeline where the main characters of the story were kids and tweaked that. It: Chapter Two Focusing on the second timeline, with the characters as adults, but with relatively minor adjustments, the first film was very self-contained.
Villeneuve’s Dune does not have that luxury. The film ends with Paul Atreides (Chalamet) and his mother Jessica (Ferguson) left behind in the dangerous desert of the planet Arrakis after a rival dynasty, House Harkonnen, attacks House Atreides and takes control of the planet and its valuable mining and production. . of the mind-altering substance known as ‘herb’.
With House Atreides destroyed, Paul’s father Duke Leto Atreides (Isaac) dead and the Harkonnens taking over the planet, Paul and Jessica seek help from the Fremen, the mysterious indigenous people of Arrakis living in the desert. With Paul increasingly suspected of being a long prophesied messiah known as Lisan al-gaib, he and Jessica are embraced by the Freemen. A young woman named Chani (Zendaya) even cryptically tells them that their journey has only just begun.
In other words, Dune: part one ends with a cliffhanger. Whether we will see what happens next on the screen depends on several factors.