'Dune Part Two' confirmed, set for 2023

Dune
Timothée Chalamet in 'Dune' (Image credit: Warner Bros.)

If you watched Dune this past weekend and were either confused why the title card called it Dune Part One or felt like it ended without a natural conclusion, well that was because director Denis Villeneuve had always intended to break author Frank Herbert’s epic sci-fi tome into two parts. That plan will now be seen through, as Warner Bros. and Legendary have given the green light to a Dune sequel, according to The Hollywood Reporter (opens in new tab).

Dune is now available to watch both in theaters and on the HBO Max streaming platform. Even with the option to watch it at home, Dune made more than $41 million at the U.S. box office in its opening weekend (Oct. 22-24), per IMDb’s Box Office Mojo; it has made $223 million globally thus far. Reviews were also strong for the film, with What to Watch’s Lucy Buglass declaring Dune an “epic cinematic experience,” while it was Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes (84%) and earned a 74 on Metacritic.

The story of Dune is about Paul Atreides, the only son of the noble House Atreides, which has been chosen to become the overseers of the desert planet Arrakis, where the most valuable resource in the galaxy, known as spice, is mined. However, there are enemies who seek to destroy House Atreides and take control of the spice themselves.

The film stars Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Oscar Isaac, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem, Jason Momoa, Stellan Skarsgård, Stephen McKinley Henderson, Sharon Duncan-Brewster, Chang Chen, Dave Bautista and Charlotte Rampling.

“Legendary is pleased to officially move forward with Dune Part Two … once again based on the amazing books written by Frank Herbert,” Legendary said in a statement. “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.”

“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,” Villeneuve added.

The Hollywood Reporter also announced that Dune Part Two is currently planned for October 2023. This would be an exclusive theatrical release, as Warner Bros. previously announced that after 2021 it is not going to be releasing its movies simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max, which should make Villeneuve happy, as he had some harsh words for the decision when it was initially announced.

Dune will be available to stream on HBO Max for the first 31 days of its release, which should leave it on the streaming service until the weekend of Nov. 20-21.

Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Peaky Blinders, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Saturday Night Live, Only Murders in the Building and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd (opens in new tab).