Tabu cast as Sister Francesca in ‘Dune: Prophecy’ prequel series

The HBO Max prequel series unfolds millennia before Paul Atreides’ ascent, following two Harkonnen sisters forging the path to the Bene Gesserit sisterhood

Updated - May 14, 2024 06:27 pm IST

Published - May 14, 2024 11:38 am IST


Tabu | Photo Credit: Nivedita Ganguly D 6074@Visakhapatnam

Following the seismic success of Denis Villeneuve’s Dune: Part Two earlier this year, the highly-anticipated HBO Max prequel series, Dune: Prophecy, has just dropped a bombshell casting update: Indian cinema legend Tabu has joined the ensemble in a recurring role, according to Variety.

Originally dubbed Dune: The Sisterhood upon its 2019 commission, the series draws its narrative DNA from Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson’s gripping novel, Sisterhood of Dune. Positioned a whopping 10,000 years prior to Paul Atreides’ iconic rise, Dune: Prophecy promises a whirlwind journey through the rich universe of Frank Herbert’s revered sci-fi franchise. Charting the saga of two formidable Harkonnen sisters, the show unravels a cosmic epic as they confront existential threats and forge the legendary Bene Gesserit order.

Tabu is stepping into the shoes of Sister Francesca, and is described as “Strong, intelligent, and alluring, Sister Francesca leaves a lasting impression in her wake. Once a great love of the Emperor, her return to the palace strains the balance of power in the capital.”

Tabu’s career in Indian cinema has been punctuated by two National Film Awards for Best Actress, earned for her performances in Maachis and Chandni Bar. She has also frequented Western productions including Life of Pi, The Namesake, and the BBC miniseries A Suitable Boy.

Joining her in the ensemble cast is Emily Watson, Olivia Williams, and Travis Fimmel, Johdi May, Mark Strong, Sarah-Sofie Boussnina, Josh Heuston, Chloe Lea, Jade Anouka, Faoileann Cunningham, Edward Davis, Aoife Hinds, Chris Mason, and Shalom Brune-Franklin. Despite weathering the storms of production turmoil, including showrunner shake-ups and creative revamps, the series remains poised to deliver a spectacle of cosmic proportions carrying forward Villeneuve’s legacy.

Under the stewardship of showrunner Alison Schapker, Dune: Prophecy was co-developed by Diane Ademu-John who also serves as executive producer alongside the Frank Herbert estate. The series is co-produced by Max and Legendary Television with Legendary also producing the film franchise.

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