The Dune cinematic universe is expanding with Dune: Sisterhood, a spin-off based on Frank Herbert’s classic sci-fi novel. The series will be airing on HBO and is being executive produced by Denis Villeneuve, the director, co-writer, and producer of the films.
Here’s what we know about the upcoming show so far.
What is Dune: Sisterhood about?
The series is a prequel that is set 10,000 years before the events of the Timothée Chalamet-led original movie, and is also based on Frank Herbert’s novel. The Harkonnen Sisters are the main characters, women who would eventually be the masterminds of the Bene Gesserit, a mysterious sect whose followers learn to control supernatural powers through extreme focus and physical mastery of their bodies. The Harkonnens generally use their powers for good to protect humanity, but there will likely be some conflict towards these ends. No conflict, no show!
Who is in the cast?
The show stars Emily Watson, Shirley Henderson, and Travis Fimmel. Other cast members include Indira Varma, Sarah-Sofie Boussnina, Shalom Brune-Franklin, Faoileann Cunningham, Aoife Hinds, and Chloe Lea.
Villeneuve is executive producing with Jon Spaihts, Scott Z. Burns, Matthew King, John Cameron, Cait Collins, and author Brian Herbert. The series co-creator and writer Diane Ademu-John announced in late November that she is stepping down as co-showrunner to work on other projects, but she’ll still be an executive producer on the show. That leaves writer-producer Alison Schapker as the sole showrunner for the series.
Has production started?
Director Johan Renck posted a photo from Budapest just a few days before Thanksgiving. That is where production has began and Renck is filming the premiere episode.
“On this day, we commence filming Dune: The Sisterhood for HBO Max,” he wrote in the caption. “Through machinations taking place millenia before the story you all know, we descend into the coven that one day shall be named the Bene Gesserit. Say it with me: ‘I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration.’”
When does it come out?
There’s no official release date, but it might be in November 2023, which is when the sequel to the first film will be out.
Erica Gonzales is the Senior Culture Editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage on TV, movies, music, books, and more. She was previously an editor at HarpersBAZAAR.com. There is a 75 percent chance she’s listening to Lorde right now.