Steven Spielberg: Dune 2 Is “One of the Most Brilliant Science-Fiction Films I’ve Ever Seen”

Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part Two debuted in theaters earlier this month, receiving praise from critics and movie-goers alike. Now, joining the ranks of its fans, is none other than Steven Spielberg, who called the movie “one of the most brilliant science-fiction films [he’s] ever seen.”

The comments came in a conversation between Spielberg and Villeneuve at the DGA theater in Los Angeles, which has since been published as an episode of The Directors Guild of America’s podcast, The Director’s Cut. Speaking about the sequel — which follows-up 2021’s Dune — Spileberg commended Villeneuve’s eye for world-building.

“It’s an honor for me to sit here and talk to you,” Spielberg began. “There are filmmakers who are the builders of worlds. It’s not a long list and we know who a lot of them are. Starting with [Georges] Méliès and Disney and Kubrick, George Lucas.” Spielberg then went on to list a number of directors, like Ray Harryhausen, Federico Fellini, Tim Burton, Wes Anderson, Peter Jackson, James Cameron, Christopher Nolan, Ridley Scott, and Guillermo del Toro. He then said to Villeneuve, “The list goes on, but it’s not that long of a list, and I deeply, fervently believe that you are one of its newest members.”


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Continuing, Spielberg praised Dune: Part Two for its treatment of the environment and its ability to make the impossible seem possible. Referring to the scene in which Timothée Chalamet’s Paul rides a sandworm for the first time, he said, “That scene surfing the sandworms is one of the greatest things I have ever seen. Ever!”

Spielberg also said, “This is a desert-loving story, but for such a desert-loving film there is such a yearning for water in this movie… For all the sand you have in this film, it’s really about water. The sacred waters that are yearning for green meadows and the blue water of life. You film the desert to resemble an ocean, a sea. The sandworms were like sea serpents… You made the desert look like a liquid.”

Dune: Part Two premiered on March 1st, and has since earned over $570 million worldwide. In her review, Consequence’s Liz Shannon Miller said the film represented “a remarkable collection of talent coming together to, if nothing else, remind us of the power of epic storytelling on a big screen.”


For more, check out our rundown of what will happen in Dune: Part Three and beyond.

As for Spielberg, his new series, Masters of the Air, recently premiered on Apple TV+.  For more on that, revisit our Masters of the Air cover story.