Austin Butler, who is set to play Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen in the upcoming Dune 2, didn’t have to do a single audition for his coveted role. Dune 2 is the sequel to the Denis Villeneuve science fiction movie Dune, which is an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Frank Herbert.
Dune 2 will follow the second half of the story from the book. It will continue the story of Timothee Chalamet’s Paul Atreides as he seeks revenge on against the Harkonnens on the desert planet of Arrakis.
As well as continuing the story of already established characters, the action movie sequel will also bring in new characters who weren’t seen in the first Dune movie. These will include more Fremen, Lady Margot Fenring, and another villainous Harkonnen. That Harkonnen will Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen, who is the nephew of the murderous Baron Harkonnen and brother to Dave Bautista’s Glossu Rabban.
Feyd-Rautha Harkonnen is the heir the Harkonnens, and a major rival to Paul Atreides. He will be played by Austin Butler, who is the star of the recent musical biopic Elvis.
Now, Butler has spoken about the casting process and how he got the role. Talking on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, he said that he met director Denis Villeneuve in person and that Villeneuve offered him the role without even having to audition. He said “Miraculously no [I didn’t have to audition]. Denis was in town and Denis asked to meet for coffee. We met for coffee and really hit it off. We talked a lot about how we like to work, we talked about the part and how I would approach it. And he said “I’m going to dream on this.” and then he called me a week later and said “I’d like you to join me on Arrakis.””
That’s a huge reveal, especially because it’s well known that other actors wanted the part. Harry Styles and Barry Keoghan were both heavily rumoured to be taking on the role – although the superhero movie actors ultimately lost out out Austin Butler.
Fans of Dune won’t have too long to wait to find out if Villeneuve made the right call, because Dune 2 is set to premiere in 2023. It comes as one of the most highly anticipated movies of the year, after the success of the first instalment.