Dune Director Denis Villeneuve Is Not A Fan Of Post-Credit Scenes, Says Theatrical Release Is His Cut

If there's one indisputably positive result that the Marvel Cinematic Universe can be held responsible for, it's the fact that these superhero movies have successfully trained audiences to sit through several minutes of lengthy credits after the final cut to black. Not everyone actually pays attention to the names of the invaluable crew members who poured blood, sweat, and tears into the entertainment we all take for granted, sure, but it's something at least! Clearly, the allure of post-credit scenes that may or may not contain ramifications on the future of the franchise is simply too much for viewers to resist.

One person who is decidedly not a fan of those extra little teasers, however, is "Dune" director Denis Villeneuve. Although fans are eager for any hint about a sequel coming to pass, maybe don't get your hopes up about seeing Samuel L. Jackson arrive out of nowhere to talk to Paul Atreides about putting together the Fremen Initiative at the end of "Dune." I, uh, have not seen the movie yet and have no idea how it actually ends, in case that needs to be said.

(Post) Credit Where Its Due

As fun as it is to oftentimes have multiple mid- or post-credit scenes to analyze and obsess about, I have to admit that I kind of miss when these tags were much more of a fun novelty than a franchise-altering expectation. I can vividly remember when I happened to leave the TV on once after watching "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" and, whoa, suddenly here was Matthew Broderick again, breaking the fourth wall and telling me to leave already because the movie was over. Reader, I was shook.

In any case, Denis Villeneuve is making it absolutely clear not to expect any extra footage once the credits start rolling upon the conclusion of "Dune." During a sit-down with NME, the "Enemy," "Sicario," and "Arrival" director explained why he has consciously opted to avoid post-credit scenes throughout his filmography — and especially when it comes to "Dune."

"I don't like post-credits scenes. There is a very specific final emotion that I was looking for with the final frame [of Dune] and I don't want to mess with that.
So no, I don't use post-credits scenes. I've never done that and I would never."

That's as final as it gets! Even without seeing the movie just yet, he certainly has a point when it comes to preserving whatever ultimate emotional response he has in mind for "Dune." As cool as it might be to receive some sort of sequel-bait clue about where the adventures on Arrakis will go next, my recent experience reading the Frank Herbert novel makes one aspect abundantly clear. This very modern approach to franchising would feel completely out of place in any adaptation of the story, so I fully trust Villeneuve's instincts on this one.

Release the Villeneuve Cut?

While on the subject of extremely modern approaches to franchise filmmaking, elsewhere in the same interview Villeneuve also addresses certain calls for an extended cut of "Dune." Star Jason Momoa has previously championed this idea, obviously influenced by his front row seat to seeing "Zack Snyder's Justice League" go from a rumor to a relentless internet campaign to a fully-fledged HBO Max release in its own right. But that, according to Villeneuve, is just another pipe dream.

"I love Jason but such a thing doesn't exist! The Director's Cut is what people are watching in theatres right now. There will be no other cut.
Yes I could have made a much longer, more contemplative movie, but that was not the plan."

If you ask me, good on Denis Villeneuve for immediately shutting this train of thought down. As a big fan of "The Lord of the Rings" extended editions, I can't exactly claim to be 100% anti-director's cuts or anything like that. However, there's something deeply weird about the idea that certain fans can't accept the realities and constrictions of blockbuster filmmaking. It'd be neat if every filmmaker was afforded the ability to release their own 3-plus hour cut of a movie, but that would rob us of appreciating the talent and skills of those who are able to say everything they need to say within the confines of a traditional theatrical cut. Call me old-fashioned!

"Dune" is currently in theaters and available to stream on HBO Max.