Dune: Part Two’s Surprise Character Explained

Dune: Part Two has taken the box office by storm, but some fans new to the franchise might be scratching their heads about a mysterious character: Alia Atreides. [Spoiler Warning for Dune: Part Two and potential sequels]

Played by Anya Taylor-Joy, Alia is the younger sister of protagonist Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet). While her casting was a late reveal, her presence wasn’t a complete surprise for eagle-eyed viewers since she’s the only major character from the novel not introduced in the first film.



However, unlike the book where Alia is born early on, the movie depicts Lady Jessica (Rebecca Ferguson) pregnant throughout and Alia only appears as a fully grown woman in Paul’s visions. This is a creative decision by director Denis Villeneuve, who opted to showcase Alia’s unique abilities through psychic communication with her mother in the womb.


In Frank Herbert’s original novel, Alia’s birth is significant because the spice-laced Water of Life she’s exposed to pre-birth grants her the powers of a Reverend Mother, a powerful position within the Bene Gesserit Sisterhood. We’ll have to wait and see if Villeneuve explores this aspect of Alia’s story further in potential sequels.