The first trailer for the much-anticipated TV prequel to the recent Dune movies promises a female-fronted look at life 10,000 years before.

Dune: Prophecy will follow the roots of the Bene Gesserit sisterhood led by the Harkonnen siblings, played by Emily Watson and Olivia Williams. Later members of the sect are played by Rebecca Ferguson and Charlotte Rampling on the big screen.

It’s inspired by the novel Sisterhood of Dune, written by Kevin J Anderson and Brian Herbert, the elder son of Frank Herbert who wrote the original Dune novels.

It comes on the heels of the second film in Denis Villeneuve’s acclaimed Dune franchise which has made over $710m globally since its release earlier this year. The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw called it “an epic sci-fi hallucination”.

“The Bene Gesserit have always been fascinating to me,” Villeneuve has said of the show. “Focusing a series around that powerful order of women seemed not only relevant and inspiring but a dynamic setting for the television series.”

Originally developed back in 2019, the show went through various iterations, including other names, and featuring different writers and actors, before becoming Dune: Prophecy, set to premiere later this year on Max. The cast also includes Mark Strong, Jodhi May and Jessica Barden.

Villeneuve was originally set to direct the pilot but later dropped out. The series now counts Anna Foerster as one of the key directors. Her credits include episodes of Outlander and action sequel Underworld: Blood Wars.

After the success of the second Dune film this year, it was revealed that a third film was officially in development. Villeneuve has revealed that he wants to make something else before which may be an adaptation of Annie Jacobsen’s ticking-clock thriller Nuclear War: A Scenario.

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