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Florence Pugh reportedly set to join cast of ‘Dune: Chapter Two’

The Oxford actress would assume the role of Princess Irulan Corrino

By Joe Goggins

Florence Pugh at the San Diego Comic-Con, 2019
Florence Pugh

Florence Pugh is on the verge of joining the cast of ‘Dune: Chapter Two’, according to reports.

Per Deadline and Variety, the Oxford actress is in talks to take on the role of Princess Irulan Corrino in Denis Villeneuve’s epic sci-fi sequel, which is set for an October 23, 2023 release date. If confirmed for the part, Pugh will star opposite Timothée Chalamet, who leads an ensemble cast as the film’s hero, Paul Atreides.

Last year’s initial adaptation of Frank Herbert’s novel, which covered roughly half of the classic sci-fi novel, was a critical and commercial success, leading Warner Bros. to green-light a follow-up that will bring to life the conclusion of Herbert’s story, which follows Atreides as he battles for control of the desert planet Arrakis.

Much of the first film’s star-studded cast will return, including Rebecca Ferguson, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Stellan Skarsgård, Dave Bautista and Zendaya. Villeneuve is again in the director’s chair, having been hailed last year for having successfully brought to the big screen a book long thought unadaptable; David Lynch’s 1984 attempt is widely considered a failure, not least by the director himself, while Alejandro Jodorowsky’s hugely ambitious concept for a movie version foundered in the 1970s.

Pugh is also reportedly in the running to play Madonna in an upcoming biopic. Casting for the film, which has been co-written by the ‘Material Girl’ star and the Oscar-winning ‘Juno’ scribe Diablo Cody, is reportedly well underway, with hopefuls for the title part being put through a “Madonna bootcamp”, per The Hollywood Reporter. Other names under consideration apparently include ‘Ozark’ star Julia Garner and indie-pop enigma Sky Ferreira.

Pugh made her breakthrough in ‘Lady Macbeth’ in 2016, before going on to star in ‘Midsommar’ and ‘Black Widow’. She was nominated for the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress in 2020, for playing Amy March in ‘Little Women’. In addition to potential starring turns in the ‘Dune’ sequel and the Madonna biopic, she’ll also soon be seen in Christopher Nolan’s ‘Oppenheimer’, which chronicles the life and times of J. Robert Oppenheimer, the scientist credited with being the “father of the atomic bomb.”