HBO has finally announced when the third and final season of The Leftovers premieres, and it’s some seriously hot property. Show creators Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta announced in a video today that The Leftovers Season 3 will premiere in April 2017, after the show took 2016 off to write and shoot its swan song. You may recall that April is usually when the almighty Game of Thrones returns to airwaves, but in order to capture the ideal weather conditions for shooting locations, Game of Thrones Season 7 was delayed and won’t be debuting until either late summer or fall 2017, leaving a gap in HBO’s schedule. Now it appears that the pay cable network has chosen The Leftovers to fill it.
Lindelof’s first TV series post-Lost, and after high-profile writing gigs on films like Prometheus and Tomorrowland, debuted in 2014 to a rather mixed response. The show was highly unlike anything Lindelof had done before, as he crafted a dark and all-consuming meditation on grief and depression without any interest in explaining the show’s inciting event—2% of the world’s population suddenly disappears. I was intrigued by Season 1 but not entirely captivated, but for Season 2, Lindelof radically changed the series by dropping half the cast and moving the setting from New England to Texas, and it resulted in one of the best seasons of television I’ve ever witnessed.
The Leftovers Season 3 once again shakes things up, moving the setting to Australia, and it’ll carry a reduced episode count of eight instead of the 10 episodes that filled out seasons 1 and 2. I’m beyond excited to see how Lindelof and Co. plan on wrapping this series up, as it’s been one of the most fascinating TV rides I can recall. They sure as hell stuck the landing of Season 2, so here’s hoping that continues with this third and final season next April.
As for what else HBO has on the docket, some high-profile (and costly) cancellations have lead to a dearth of original drama content. Shows from David Fincher, Steve McQueen, and even a Lewis & Clark series were scuttled before they even aired, and Vinyl was a costly flop that was cancelled after Season 1. On the docket for 2017 aside from The Leftovers is the international co-production The Young Pope, airing in January, as well as David Simon’s 70s-set porn drama The Deuce. The network also has the star-studded miniseries Big Little Lies debuting in February, and is working on bolstering its lineup with a developing drama from Alan Ball and the Amy Adams-led Gillian Flynn adaptation Sharp Objects, though airdates for those two are TBD.