The Succession drought that’s been plaguing HBO since October 2019 will finally reach its end this fall, when the acclaimed drama series returns for a third season, and with it the impending Roy civil war. If, like me, the only image burned in your mind from many months ago is Kendall Roy donning a “L OG 50” baseball jersey and rapping, “Bro, don’t get it twisted, I’ve been through hell / But since I stan Dad, I’m alive and well,” then you’ll happily indulge in a brief recap.
Last time we saw the Roy family, patriarch Logan was acknowledging his son Kendall’s blood-sacrifice-gone-sideways with a subtle, perfect smirk. Kendall, once the child most pitifully desperate for his father’s approval, turns on him with striking ruthlessness during a press conference in which he’s meant to take the fall for his daddy’s corruption. Waystar RoyCo, the family’s company, is in hot water following a cruise ship scandal and multiple subsequent cover-ups, one of them courtesy of Cousin Greg, who, notably, has kept copies of incriminating documents in case the family throws him under the bus. But it’s Kendall who’s eventually selected to wear the crown of thorns, and he steps up to the microphone to endure his punishment, his stony expression betraying no anger. But once he sits down to speak, he changes the game entirely.
“The truth is that my father is a malignant presence, a bully and a liar, and he was fully personally aware of these events for many years,” he tells the press. “…My father keeps a watchful eye over every inch of his whole empire, and the notion that he would have allowed millions of dollars in settlements and compensation to be paid without his explicit approval is utterly fanciful.”
So much for stanning Dad, huh?
“I think this is the day his reign ends,” Kendall concludes, and Logan answers from his post on the family yacht with that now-infamous smirk. Whether it’s one of approval or one of eagerness for a challenge well-met remains to be seen. Here’s what we know about what’s next in the Succession saga.
When will the new season air?
There is not an official release date set yet, but HBO’s chief content officer Casey Bloys confirmed the season will debut this fall, per The Wrap.
The official description for the next chapter reads: “Ambushed by his rebellious son Kendall at the end of season 2, Logan Roy begins season 3 in a perilous position. Scrambling to secure familial, political, and financial alliances, tensions rise as a bitter corporate battle threatens to turn into a family civil war.”
Who is in the cast?
The most familiar faces are confirmed to return, including Bryan Cox, Jeremy Strong, Sarah Snook, Kieran Culkin, Nicholas Braun, Alan Ruck, and Matthew Macfayden. In addition, three previous guest stars have been bumped up to series regulars: Justine Lupe, David Rasche, and Hugo Baker.
But there will be new contenders to watch as well. A quick overview:
- Sanaa Lathan (The Affair, Shots Fired) will join as Lisa Arthur, a high-profile, well-connected New York lawyer, per Deadline. It’s likely she’ll either be brought on by Team Logan or Team Kendall to manage the fallout of the press conference.
- K-pop singer Jihae Kim will take on Berry Schneider, a PR consultant—again a likely tool for post-press conference damage control.
- Linda Emond (The Gilded Age, Madam Secretary) is set to play Michelle-Anne Vanderhoven, a senior White House aide, an interesting casting announcement, given that it points to further political entanglements for the Roys.
- Hope Davis (Your Honor) will tackle the role of Sandi Furness, daughter of Logan’s rival, whom you might remember is also named Sandy. (But with a “y,” of course.)
- Alexander Skarsgård (Big Little Lies, The Stand) will star as Lukas Matsson, described as “a successful, confrontational tech founder and CEO,” per Variety.
- Adrien Brody (Peaky Blinders) officially joined the cast in May, when Variety announced that he would guest-star as Josh Aaronson, “a billionaire activist investor who becomes pivotal in the battle for the ownership of Waystar.”
Is there a trailer?
There’s a short teaser, but it’s got enough juicy nuggets to stir up the fan theory machine. On July 6, HBO released the 1-minute and 13-second clip, which features such delightful lines as, “The revolution will be televised!” and “Logan’s gonna fire a million poisonous spiders down your dickie.” Watch the full video below.
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Will the location extend beyond the U.S.?
It sure sounds like it. New York City will always be an important home base for the Roy clan, but the scripts seem to be headed overseas. In an interview with Deadline, Succession writer and co-executive producer Lucy Prebble revealed in November 2019 that the scripts would likely bring countries outside of the U.S. into the mix. “There are also a lot of talks about going more international than we’ve gone before, which is to do with the relationship between the media industry and international countries,” she said. “The way international countries input, control and fund the media in ways that aren’t talked about as clearly as they should be.”
Sure enough, Kieran Culkin revealed to Collider in July 2021 that he was in Italy shooting the series. “We’re about to shoot the last two episodes out here,” he said, “and I don’t think I can tell you anything [else].”
How many more seasons will there be?
The series will likely end after four or five seasons, now that a recent interview with Succession writer Georgia Pritchett revealed there’s an “end in sight.”
“We’re at the end of filming season three, so at this point [creator Jesse Armstrong] is saying only one more,” she told The Times of London. “But that happens every time.”
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