Dune is going to be a two-part film. Some speculated early on that it was going to be a two part film, but the second part would be made if the first film did well. This never made any sense to me. The book demands being a two parter from the get go, and I believed the film was going to be made in one shooting.
A very interesting article from Forbes about what Dune must avoid to not be your standard Sci-Fi fantasy flop. I'm apparently in the minority because I LOVE sci-fi films and I go see them. All the films listed in this article, I have seen, so, with that said, Legendary knows how lazy your 'average moviegoer' is and they need to make this film relatable, easy to follow, and compelling to get a great ROI.
It’s not like folks have been clamoring for “The Paul Atreides Story.” They (especially overseas audiences) didn’t even care about a Han Solo movie with Star Wars slapped on the title. That being said, if it turns out to be visually compelling and halfway decent (yes, I’m the dolt who disliked Blade Runner 2049, but I can admit I’m in the minority), the key to even potential success for Legendary and (presumably, considering their recent reunion) Warner Bros. lies in a two factors. First and foremost, I am optimistic that Legendary is learning one big lesson and not spending $155 million on this picture. Blade Runner 2049, an adult-skewing, R-rated sci-fi drama, earned $92m domestic and $259m worldwide. That would have been pretty decent (but not spectacular) on a $90m budget, as opposed to the Ryan Gosling/Harrison Ford picture’s $160m price tag.
John Carter grossed $272 million worldwide, Tomorrowland grossed $209m global and Valerian earned $220m. Had those films been budgeted closer to $100m-$125m, presuming such a thing was even possible, they would have been far less disastrous.
If Dune wants any chance at succeeding, let alone spawning a franchise, it has to make sure that it’s cheap enough that merely equaling John Carter or Blade Runner 2049’s global gross will qualify as a hit. Moreover, it needs to treat its source material not as a surefire crutch but as a jumping-off point (if not an outright obstacle) to selling the film to general moviegoers.