Just when we thought Euphoria couldn’t get more intense, season 2 opened with Fezco’s grandmother shooting his abusive father in both legs. Sure, fans expected drugs, betrayal, and sex with some violence sprinkled in between (you know, your average run-of-the-mill high school problems), but creator Sam Levinson definitely surprised us with an onslaught in the HBO drama’s sophomore chapter: Rue’s breakdown, Cassie’s secret affair, Cal’s penis, and of course, Lexi’s all-too-revealing play.
Plot points aside, Euphoria’s second chapter brought us more beautiful cinematography and Labrinth’s tear-inducing soundtrack. We were also treated to astounding performances by Sydney Sweeney, Alexa Demie, and Nika King, all of whom showed more vulnerability than ever this season. The adult drama is undoubtedly one of HBO’s most popular series, and despite critics’s vocal judgment of the show’s graphic content—and inconsistent plot—fans and haters alike couldn’t help but tune in every Sunday. (Viewership for the second season was nearly double that of the first, Variety reported). Thus, it’s no shocker that before the second season ended, Euphoria was renewed for a third.
“Sam, Zendaya, and the entire cast and crew of Euphoria have taken season 2 to extraordinary heights, challenging narrative convention and form, while maintaining its heart,” Francesca Orsi, executive vice president of HBO Programming, said in a statement when the renewal was announced. “We couldn’t be more honored to work with this gifted, wildly talented team or more excited to continue our journey with them into season 3.”
So, what’s next now that season 2 has ended? Here are all of your Euphoria’s season three questions, answered.
When will season 3 premiere?
Fans aren’t exactly eager to wait another two years for more Euphoria episodes—and hopefully they won’t have to. COVID-19 halted season 2 production, which pushed the release date later than expected; but now that health restrictions on sets have loosened, the wait should’t be as long this time around. The exact release date has not yet been announced.
Who will be in the cast?
We’re hoping to see series regulars Zendaya, Hunter Schafer, Angus Cloud, Alexa Demie, Jacob Elordi, Sydney Sweeney, Maude Apatow, Nika King, Storm Reid, and Austin Abrams again, but we’ll have to wait for official confirmation from HBO. As for season 2 newcomers Dominic Fike and Chloe Cherry, there’s no word yet if they’ll be back.
On potential return could be Kathrine Narducci as Fezco’s gun-toting, drug-dealing grandmother. In an interview with ELLE.com, Narducci revealed she hopes to come back to the role in season 3. “I got to come out of that dang coma,” she said. “I told [director] Sam [Levinson] I want to come out of the coma, and go after Laurie…She’s going to come after Zendaya. Zendaya needs a little help.”
Barbie Ferreira, however, will not return to play Kat. She announced her departure from Euphoria on Aug. 24 with a photo of fan art of her character drawn by her co-star, Hunter Schafer.
“After four years of getting to embody the most special and enigmatic character Kat, I’m having to say a very teary-eyed goodbye,” Ferreira wrote. “I hope many of you could see yourself in her like I did and that she brought you joy to see her journey into the character she is today. I put all my care and love into her and I hope you guys could feel it. Love you Katherine Hernandez.”
What will season 3 be about?
Euphoria will have a lot of questions to answer next season after that finale showdown. First things first: What’s going to happen to Fez? The drug dealer was arrested along with Faye after the police raided their house (thanks to Ashtray’s genius decision to kill Custer, who was doubling as a police informant). True to his character, Fez was willing to go to jail for the murder, but Ashtray wasn’t going to let his brother go down. So, the kid strapped up and rained hell on the police officers until his “death.” (Since we never saw Ash get shot, there’s no guarantee that he’s dead.)
As for the rest of the Euphoria crew, their future is up-in-the-air, too. Maddy gets her revenge by fighting Cassie during Lexi’s play, but what comes after that? All we see is Maddie is giving her former best friend some well-needed advice. (Same applies to Kat, who was seemingly pushed aside this season.) As for Cassie, she’s all alone after being dumped by Nate, her friends, and even her family. Hopefully, we’ll see some humility from her soon.
We can also hope for some update on Rue and Jules’ friendship. The friends-turned-lovers ended their romance when Jules told Rue’s mother about her drug use. Although the pair briefly spoke at the end of Lexi’s play, they’re still not entirely reunited as friends or as lovers. But maybe that’s for the best.
Although it may seem that Ash is gone for good, Javon Walton, the actor who plays the character, thinks otherwise. He told Esquire that a Fez and Ash reunion is inevitable, adding that “Ash is definitely going to find a way back to [Fez] because that’s the person he cares about most to him.”
Speaking of Fez, there’s hope that some romance might develop between him and Lexi. Apatow, who plays Lexi, told Entertainment Weekly that it’s “very refreshing” to see a bond so “innocent and sweet” between them, especially in contrast to the more extreme elements of the rest of the show. She added, “I think Angus is such a great actor, and we just have so much fun working together. So for selfish reasons, I hope we get to do more scenes together because it’s fun.”
King, who plays Rue’s mother, Leslie, hopes there could be room to explore the character’s backstory. She told Entertainment Weekly, “Season 3, I’m hoping to see maybe a little more backstory, like where does she work? We never had that conversation. I know in my head where she works; she’s got multiple jobs. But I think it’ll be fun to see where she comes from.”
While it’s still unclear if Chloe Cherry will appear in season 3, she shared her hopes for where Faye’s story could go next, such as bonding with Rue. “I think Faye has a story of addiction to tell as Rue does; even though it’s different, I think that they could learn something from each other,” she told Variety. “I also think Rue is a non-judgmental character, and I think that is all Faye needs. I think if they got closer, they would get along because they have these shared experiences and they are both chill girls in spite of it.”
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Zendaya said that as a producer, she’d like to see a time jump for the characters in a future season so they’d be able to explore them outside of high school.
“I think it’ll be exciting to explore the characters out of high school,” she said. “I want to see what Rue looks like in her sobriety journey, how chaotic that might look. But also with all the characters, in the sense where they’re trying to figure out what to do with their lives when high school is over and what kind of people they want to be. What was special about this season was that we got to dive into [the other characters] in a much deeper sense. I think we can do that again with the third season.”
We don’t know yet if season 3 will be Euphoria’s last. HBO’s Casey Bloys told TVLine of whether the show will end here, “I will let [exec producer] Sam [Levinson] and Zendaya talk about [that]. I’m very excited about what they’ve got planned [for season 3]. So I will leave that to them. I will say, generally speaking, we trust where they want to take these characters. So we’ll let the creative team lead the way.”
Melanie Curry (she/her) is an editorial assistant at Hearst Magazines where she does a little of bit of everything in digital media. Her work has appeared in Men’s Health, InStyle, ELLE, and more. When not writing the day away, you can find her drinking a cold brew at Starbucks, reading a romance novel, or binge-watching the trendiest show on Netflix.
Lauren Puckett-Pope is an associate editor at ELLE, where she covers news and culture.