Kyle MacLachlan To Join Dune 2?

By Nathan Kamal | 3 months ago

Kyle MacLachlan

Director Denis Villeneuve’s adaptation of the iconic science fiction novel Dune was an enormous hit, rapturously received by critics and getting solid box office numbers despite being released in the middle of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. David Lynch’s own adaptation of Dune in 1984 was…not either of those things. Although it has gone on to gain something of a cult repetition, it is generally considered a failed attempt at a herculean task. But one of those things that has critical consenus is that actor Kyle MacLachlan’s portrayal of central character Paul Atreides was a highlight of the film. So when MacLachlan recently told he was open to joining the upcoming sequel Dune 2, it caused some excitement. 

David Lynch’s Dune was Kyle MacLachlan’s film debut, and to be honest, it does show in his performance. He often appears somewhat blank and uncertain, and compared to grizzled actors like Jürgen Prochnow (who played his character’s father Duke Leto Atreides) and the dignity of Patrick Stewart’s Gurney Halleck, he comes off a bit like a lost child. However, that is exactly what the role of Paul Atreides, an inexperienced and yet superhuman child in over his head needs, which is why sickly Victorian child actor Timothée Chalamet also did well. It speaks to both MacLachlan’s skill as an actor at even a young age and Lynch’s casting that he made the role work in what was apparently a film production of historic confusion. The two would go on to work together many times, including cult TV series Twin Peaks (and its 2017 Showtime revival) and the film Blue Velvet

dune 2

But would Kyle MacLachlan work in Denis Villeneuve’s Dune 2? It is difficult to say. While the sequel was quickly greenlit and is reportedly already in production, the French director’s film was wildly different in tone than David Lynch’s disjointed hallucination of a movie. In addition, while MacLachlan has had a long and successful career since Dune, he has increasingly skewed to comedic roles in shows like Sex and the City and How I Met Your Mother. Humor is a very rare thing in Villeneuve’s films, but given that MacLachlan also said he would be up for whatever the director wanted, maybe they could make it work. Then there would be the question of who he would play, or if it would be a glorified cameo. If the former, may we suggest Count Hasimir Fenring, the Padishah Emperor’s best friend and assassin? Given that the source material hinted at a secret connection between Paul Atreides and Fenring, it would be fitting casting.

Whether or not it features Kyle MacLachlan, Dune 2 is already hotly anticipated. Denis Villeneuve has already given indication that the sequel will feature Zendaya’s Fremen character Chani as the lead, and that he had always envisioned his adaptation as being a trilogy. So even if we don’t get MacLachlan this time around, there’s a strong possibility for another chance. As long as you get Javier Bardem on a sandworm at some point.