You know that highly anticipated cinematic trip back to the planet Arrakis you were planning this November? Well, you might want to unpack your movie snack stash for a few months.
Warner Bros. has just made the tough decision to push the second half of director Denis Villeneuve's "Dune" all the way into next year, when it will finally land in theaters on March 15, 2024.
We'd all been led to believe that the storied studio would stand firm on "Dune: Part 2's" original launch date of Nov. 3, 2023. However, now that the Hollywood WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes are lingering and no apparent compromises are being proposed, Warner Bros. aborted that plan and is now shooting for early 2024.
Legendary Entertainment and Warner Bros. Film Group both agreed that this was the wise choice, most certainly due to the fact that the sci-fi sequel would not have its A-list stars — like Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Austin Butler, Florence Pugh, Javier Bardem, Dave Bautista, Christopher Walken and Lea Seydoux — available for all-important press events during the ongoing strike.
Per union rules, members are not allowed to mention, discuss, or promote any film project they're involved in while engaged in a labor dispute resulting in an official strike. Studios rely on this crucial arm of their marketing machine to generate release excitement, and with a stout $122 million budget on the line in addition to ongoing print, TV and online advertising costs, Warner Bros. can't afford to lose out on its stellar cast and writers not being interviewed for press junkets and live appearances.
Here's "Dune: Part 2's" full synopsis:
"This follow-up film will explore the mythic journey of Paul Atreides as he unites with Chani and the Fremen while on a warpath of revenge against the conspirators who destroyed his family. Facing a choice between the love of his life and the fate of the known universe, he endeavors to prevent a terrible future only he can foresee."
Hang tight! Denis Villeneuve's "Dune: Part 2" will now arrive in theaters just in time for students' spring break revelry and the Easter holiday, on March 15, 2024.
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Jeff Spry is an award-winning screenwriter and veteran freelance journalist covering TV, movies, video games, books, and comics. His work has appeared at SYFY Wire, Inverse, Collider, Bleeding Cool and elsewhere. Jeff lives in beautiful Bend, Oregon amid the ponderosa pines, classic muscle cars, a crypt of collector horror comics, and two loyal English Setters.