Tie up your deck shoes and cue the Nicholas Britell. HBO’s Succession is returning for a third season.
“We are elated that Succession and its exploration of wealth, power, and family has resonated so powerfully with audiences,” Francesca Orsi, executive vice president of HBO drama programming, said in a statement in 2019, just two weeks into the show’s sophomore run.
What lies ahead for the Roy family and Waystar Royco following the Emmy-nominated Season 2 and its brutal finale? According to HBO, it’s a father-son war between Kendall and Logan Roy. “Ambushed by his rebellious son Kendall at the end of Season 2, Logan Roy begins Season 3 in a perilous position,” the official synopsis reads. “Scrambling to secure familial, political, and financial alliances, tensions rise as a bitter corporate battle threatens to turn into a family civil war.”
Here’s what we know so far.
The new season will arrive in October.
In the new official trailer, HBO confirms that Succession Season 3 will arrive on October 17. The footage teases—spoiler alert!—the Roy family in the chaotic aftermath of Kendall’s bombshell press conference. Meanwhile, Shiv feels caught between siding with her brother or her dad, and Tom and Greg are up to their usual antics. Watch the full trailer above.
HBO Max also previously announced that the series would return in 2021 while previewing its new slate for the year.
Expect the cast to return.
Succession stars Brian Cox as Logan Roy, the ailing head of hulking media conglomerate Waystar Royco. Jeremy Strong, Sarah Snook, Kieran Culkin, and Alan Ruck play his bickering heirs, with Hiam Abbass, Nicholas Braun, and Matthew Macfadyen completing the family’s inner circle. Dagmara Dominczyk, Peter Friedman, Arian Moayed, J. Smith-Cameron, and Rob Yang play long-suffering Waystar executives and employees.
Filming reportedly began in November.
The third season was expected to start filming in New York “right around the middle of November,” Alan Ruck, who plays Connor Roy, told People. His comments aligned with showrunner and creator Jesse Armstrong’s hopes that production would begin before Christmas.
The season could be shorter than usual.
While the first two seasons consist of 10 episodes each, Season 3 could possibly contain fewer due to production changes amid the pandemic. “There’s certainly a story line,” Cox told The New York Times in July 2020. “We don’t know how many episodes we’re doing. It could be eight, it could be nine. We’re in that ballpark.”
He continued, “But of course we have to see how the current crisis affects the writing and what we take on board.”
Season 3 might address the pandemic.
The question on every Succession fan’s mind over the past few months: How would the Roys handle quarantine? Armstrong just might address that query in the third season, but he “wants to be delicate about it and just classy,” according to Snook, who plays Shiv Roy.
“I think it’s a thing that everybody’s aware of, and audiences are really intuitive these days,” she added to Variety. “Even just seeing a mask in the background of something or hand sanitizer, those things that have become part of our daily lives, those things maybe, but nothing that is so overt that is going to really tackle it head on, because that’s not the show. We want to see the Roys doing the thing that they’ve been doing that we love, not pivoting towards a pandemic story.”
For those wondering how patriarch Logan Roy would fare under stay-at-home orders, Cox thinks he’d be “fine,” he told the Times. “He might get a bit bored but he’s got enough money to survive. It might be an opportunity for him to get a sense of the world — not that I think he would. Because he’s such an ornery cuss.”
We don’t know if this is the last season.
It’s unclear how many seasons Succession will run, but Armstrong revealed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly interview that his end game includes ultimately revealing the Waystar Royco inheritor. “It’s not the sort of show which should go on forever, because there’s a question set up in the title of the show and I think it’s a question you eventually want answered,” he said. Additionally, Armstrong revealed on a panel in 2018 that his plan for executing the finale could eventually change. “It’s smart to be flexible about that type of stuff,” he said.
Birds of Prey’s Cathy Yan will be directing an episode.
Yan, who helmed the 2020 Harley Quinn-centered action romp, announced on Twitter that she’ll be directing an episode of Succession’s third season. She confirmed the news after comedian Ali Wong spilled the details on Instagram. Yan wrote that she’s “[very] happy to be working on my favorite show!!”
New additions include Sanaa Lathan.
Variety reported a number of new additions to the Season 3 cast. Sanaa Lathan (Love & Basketball) will play Lisa Arthur, a prominent and “well-connected” New York lawyer. Linda Emond (Jenny’s Wedding) will play White House aide Michelle-Anne Vanderhoven. Korean singer and actress Jihae has been cast as Berry Schneider, a PR consultant.
In late April, Lathan shared a selfie from set, teasing her character.
Alexander Skarsgård is also joining the cast.
The True Blood and Big Little Lies star will have a recurring role as Lukas Matsson, a “confrontational CEO and tech founder,” IndieWire reported.
Adrien Brody has been cast too.
The Pianist actor will guest-star as Josh Aaronson, “a billionaire activist investor who becomes pivotal in the battle for the ownership of Waystar,” Deadline reported. His casting was announced days after Skarsgård’s.
Ella Rumpf will guest-star.
The Swiss actress, who starred in the 2016 horror film Raw, has landed a guest role, though details about her character remain under wraps, Variety exclusively reported. The outlet also revealed that Rumpf has already finished filming in Italy, where production has been ongoing since June.
Refresh your memory of Succession Season 2 on HBO or HBO Max, and catch up with BAZAAR.com’s coverage here.