EntertainmentDune: Part Two" shatters records with $178.5 million opening weekend

Dune: Part Two" shatters records with $178.5 million opening weekend

"Dune: Part Two" is breaking records in theaters
"Dune: Part Two" is breaking records in theaters
Images source: © Press materials
8:47 AM EST, March 6, 2024

The sequel, directed by Denis Villeneuve, has significantly impacted cinemas, setting new records. Preliminary forecasts suggested the movie would earn $80 million during its opening weekend, a figure Warner Bros. was more conservative about, expecting around $60 million. Surpassing expectations, "Dune: Part Two" amassed a staggering $178.5 million in its first weekend alone, nearing its $190 million budget.

A notable omission from the second part was the character Thufir Hawat, portrayed by Stephen McKinley. Hawat, the loyal household servant of the Atreides who played a significant role in the protection of the princely court and the education of young Paul, is more prominently featured in the books. Despite surviving the massacre on Arrakis by the Harkonnens in the literature, his storyline was truncated on screen.

"Removing this character was one of the most difficult decisions. I absolutely love this character, but I had already decided to focus on adapting the Bene Gesserit story. This meant that the mentats wouldn't be as prominent in this narrative as they are in the books," comments Denis Villeneuve.
Villeneuve acknowledged that a few scenes were cut from the nearly three-hour movie. While fans might hope that these unpublished materials could appear on Blu-ray or in the streaming version, Villeneuve decisively states, "I strongly believe that if something didn't make it into the film, it's dead. It's a painful process, but necessary."
"Sometimes, when I'm cutting various shots, I can hardly believe what's happening. It feels like a samurai slicing open his own guts. It's a pain not being able to return to that material, to not create a Frankenstein from the reanimated scenes. If it's dead, it should stay that way. It died for a reason," he elaborates.
Tim Blake Nelson also experienced the director's metaphorical samurai sword. It was revealed the actor had filmed scenes for "Dune: Part Two," though the character he played remains undisclosed, as all his scenes were ultimately cut.
"I had a great time filming that scene. And then it was decided to cut it because he thought the film was too long. I'm devastated, but I hold no grudges. I really enjoyed it and can't wait to work with him again; it's definitely in my plans," Denis commented.
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