Dune 2 Strangely Has Something In Common With Little Women

If you're longing to return to the dry, sandy heat of planet Arrakis, we have good news. "Dune: Part 2" officially wrapped filming in December 2022, keeping the sequel on track for its scheduled arrival later this year. Finally, director Denis Villeneuve will get to present the real meat of Paul Atreides' "hero's journey," with more time to flesh out the allies he made in the first film, most notably Chani (played by Zendaya). The highly-anticipated sequel will also be adding some key new characters as well — and just when you thought the "Dune" cast couldn't get any better, here comes Florence Pugh as Princess Irulan.

In a November 2022 interview with Variety to promote his role in the film "Bones and All," Paul Atreides himself, Timothée Chalamet, has loads of praise to offer both Zendaya and Pugh. As new to the Hollywood scene as all three actors are (in a relative sense), Chalamet and Pugh were far from strangers before making "Dune: Part 2." The pair previously played love interests Laurie and Amy in Greta Gerwig's joyful 2019 film adaptation of "Little Women," which led to Pugh's first Academy Award nomination.

During production on the second "Dune" movie, Chalamet and Pugh noticed a funny little connection between their relationship in Frank Hebert's oppressive, sci-fi world and the one that blossomed between their characters in Gerwig's adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's coming-of-age masterpiece. Hint: It has to do with their characters' romantic love triangles.

Chalamet's many love triangles

"We were joking on set that we keep doing these movies, and we end up together even though we should be ending up with different people," Timothée Chalamet said, referring to how in both films, his character initially pines over one character and imagines them to be his true love, only to end up with Florence Pugh's character instead. In the first "Dune," Paul has visions of Chani, yet Irulan is his true endgame. Similarly, as Laurie in "Little Women," he falls in love with Jo March (Saoirse Ronan) throughout their childhood, but eventually marries her sister Amy. 

"Florence is really special," Chalamet added. "She's an incredible actor. She was incredible in 'Dune' — seriously incredible. She brought a gravitas to the role. And I can't believe my good fortune at this young age [...] between Taylor Russell in 'Bones and All' and Zendaya in 'Dune.' And ['Elvis' star] Austin Butler's in that movie too."

Clearly, Chalamet's agent is doing something very right, as the actor always seems to surround himself with promising talent while working on equally exciting projects. Chalamet and Pugh displayed a wonderful amount of chemistry in "Little Women," so much so that the adaptation wound up adding much more depth to Laurie and Amy's relationship (along with Amy as a character) than what's there in the original text. Needless to say, it should be a real treat to see what they pull off as Paul and Irulan.

"Dune: Part 2" opens in theaters on November 3, 2023. As Laurie once said to Jo, "And I'll watch!"