"Dune" Director Denis Villeneuve Teases Potential Third Film: "There Are Words on Paper"

It seems the cinematic "Dune" universe is already eyeing plans for a continuance ahead of the second film installment. While Warner Bros. recently pushed "Dune: Part Two"'s premiere to March 2024 in light of the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, rumors about a third movie have already swirled and they appear to be true, per a new revelation from director Denis Villeneuve. In an interview with Empire published on Aug. 27, the filmmaker shared hopes of further exploring the world of Arrakis in what could be "Dune: Part Three."

"If I succeed in making a trilogy, that would be the dream," he told the outlet.

As many fans know, the "Dune" franchise so far is an adaptation of Frank Herbert's 1965 sci-fi novel of the same name. A third "Dune" would consist of the first book's direct follow-up, "Dune Messiah," which chronicles Paul Atreides's (played by Timothée Chalamet in the films) rise as Emperor of Arrakis and, according to Villeneuve, "was written in reaction to the fact that people perceived Paul Atreides as a hero." He explained to Empire, "Which is not what he wanted to do. My adaptation is closer to his idea that it's actually a warning." So should "Dune: Part Three" ever be made, it would subsequently mark the end of Villeneuve's pursuit of Paul's story. The director added, "After that the books become more… esoteric."

Warner Bros. hasn't made any official announcements about a third film yet, and surely nothing can be set in stone until "Dune: Part Two" — which also stars Zendaya, Austin Butler, Florence Pugh, and Léa Seydoux — is a proven box-office success. However, Villeneuve teased that his comments aren't just fueling a rumor mill: "I will say, there are words on paper."

Now, it's just a waiting game to see if/when "Dune: Part Three" will see the light of day.