Denis Villeneuve plans to adapt Dune: Messiah as the third Dune movie

It's a bit of a Dune frenzy at the moment, what with the release of the first movie and the announcement of Dune: Part Two for 20th October 2023. Director Denis Villeneuve is certainly not resting on his laurels, especially given that he has plans for a third movie adapted from Frank Herbert's science-fiction series.

Dune: Part One has already been acclaimed for its faithfulness to Herbert's source and its grandiose sense of scale, mixing practical effects and CGI seamlessly. The first film focuses on the naive yet wilful Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) as he finds himself stranded on the desert planet Arrakis with his mother, Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson). Arrakis is at the centre of an intergalactic struggle over the substance known as spice, and Paul also has to grapple with his destiny as the prophesied messiah.

After splitting Herbert's original Dune novel in half, Villeneuve now plans to adapt Dune: Messiah, the second book in Herbert's messianic sci-fi saga. 

"I always envisioned three movies," Villeneuve tells Entertainment Weekly. "It's not that I want to do a franchise, but this is Dune, and Dune is a huge story. In order to honour it, I think you would need at least three movies. That would be the dream. To follow Paul Atreides and his full arc would be nice."

"Herbert wrote six books, and the more he was writing, the more it was getting psychedelic," Villeneuve continues. "So I don't know how some of them could be adapted. One thing at a time. If I ever have the chance to do Dune: Part Two and Dune Messiah, I'm blessed."

Without wanting to give anything away, in the novel Dune: Messiah we pick up several years later with Paul Atreides, as he grapples with the duality of the power that he wields. Should Villeneuve realise his ambitions, we could be looking at the culmination of a cinematic achievement to rival the likes of Star Wars and Lord of the Rings.

While you ponder that question, you might well be champing at the bit to watch the movie again. In which case, click here to book your tickets for Dune and tweet us @Cineworld with your thoughts on Denis Villeneuve's proposed trilogy.