Zendaya teases her expanded role in Dune 2, but it's not the biggest change between the movie and the novel

 Zendaya in Dune: Part Two.
Zendaya in Dune: Part Two.

The first Dune movie was all about Paul (Timothée Chalamet), but it seems like that's all about to change in the upcoming sequel with Zendaya's Fremen character Chani coming into her own.

Chani’s limited role in Part One will be greatly expanded in Part Two, even beyond the scope of the novel, with director Denis Villeneuve claiming that "as the movie progresses, there’s a shift in the main character, and Chani becomes my reference as a point of view."

Speaking to Total Film in our new issue, which features Dune 2 on the cover and is out this Thursday, Zendaya notes that "what Denis does very well is take the female characters more deeply into consideration" in a way that was rarely the case for science fiction in the '60s.

"He was really able to build out a strong sense of [Chani’s] own views and life," she says. "It wasn’t entirely like she’s at the will of who she’s in love with. I did feel a particular sense of care for what Chani represents in his films."

Paul (Timothée Chalamet)'s mother Lady Jessica, played by Rebecca Ferguson, similarly benefits from this sense of care. Villeneuve even highlights her increased presence as the single biggest difference between the novel and his adaptation.

"Strangely, Jessica’s more in the background in the second part [of the novel] – I thought that was not proper," he asserts. "She’s still Lady Jessica, the main architect of the story. I thought that was a very powerful idea that was not sustained in the book. I made sure that she has the character presence in the second part."

Dune 2 releases on March 1. You can read more about it, and a whole lot else besides, in the new issue of Total Film when it hits shelves and digital newsstands on Thursday, February 1. Check out the covers below:

Total Film's Dune: Part Two covers
Total Film's Dune: Part Two covers

(Image credit: Total Film/Image courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures/Photo by Jack Davison)

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