It has been nearly four years since we last saw Aziz Ansari‘s acclaimed Netflix comedy Master of None, and while some feared the show had been cancelled after its second season in the wake of a 2018 sexual misconduct allegation against Ansari, a new report claims it is, in fact, returning to the streaming service for Season 3.
The report comes from UK-based comedy website Chortle, which not only claims that Season 3 will take place in London, but adds that Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker actress Naomi Ackie has joined the cast, and likely as Ansari‘s new love interest. In fact, Chortle claims that Ansari and co-creator Alan Yang actually started shooting Season 3 last spring on the down low, but production was put on hold due to the pandemic.
Season 2 of Master of None was filmed in both New York and Italy, so the show does have an international precedent, and Ansari has been living in London of late, so the new setting makes sense. Meanwhile, the Season 2 finale hinted at the end of Dev’s relationship with Francesca (Alessandra Mastronardi) after she removed her engagement ring. Thus, it makes sense that Season 3 would find Dev living in a new city, trying to find love (and great food) once again.
After Season 2 aired, Ansari told Vulture that “I’ve got to become a different guy before I write a third season, is my personal thought, I’ve got to get married or have a kid or something. I don’t have anything else to say about being a young guy being single in New York eating food around town all the time.”
His personal life and career blew up just a few months later, though Netflix‘s former head of original content Cindy Holland stood by him at the time, insisting that the streamer would love to bring back Master of None “when Aziz is ready.” That time appears to have arrived, and when film blog Spettacolo Italiano asked him about a potential Season 3 back in May, Ansari said “If I’m not writing something now [during lockdown], it’s pretty lazy right?”
Of course, Ansari stayed out of the public eye for more than a year before returning to Netflix for 2019’s comedy special Aziz Ansari: Right Now, in which he addressed the allegations and subsequent backlash against him, and seemed like a man grateful for the opportunity to tell jokes onstage for a living. I was lucky enough to see Ansari perform that special live in the run-up to the taping, and whether or not you think a comedy special is an appropriate platform to address such serious allegations, I think Ansari showed genuine remorse about what happened, and deserves a second chance.
In addition to Right Now, which was directed by Oscar winner Spike Jonze, Ansari also appeared in a special episode of Parks and Recreation that was filmed under lockdown conditions for charity, and fans of the show were delighted to see him reprise his beloved role as Tom Haverford.
As for Season 3 of Master of None, Lena Waithe is slated to reprise her role as Dev’s friend Denise, and I would expect Eric Wareheim and Kelvin Yu to also return, though nothing is official at this stage. Meanwhile, Ackie won a BAFTA for her turn in the Netflix series The End of the F***ing World, and she’s set to play Whitney Houston in the upcoming biopic I Wanna Dance with Somebody. Master of None is no doubt a coup for her growing resume, but the show is also lucky to have her, as she’s a rising star.
Personally, I can’t wait for Master of None to come back, as it truly is one of the best things Netflix has ever done.