‘Succession’ Showrunner Jesse Armstrong Reveals Series Will End With Season 4: ‘Never Thought This Could Go On Forever’
If it is to be said, so it be, so it is. Succession showrunner Jesse Armstrong announced the HBO series will come to a conclusion after four seasons.
“It’s been a bit tortured, and I felt unexpectedly nervous about talking to you because it’s all theoretical until this point,” Armstrong, 52, told The New Yorker in an article published on Thursday, February 23. “You know, there’s a promise in the title of Succession. I’ve never thought this could go on forever.”
The black comedy first premiered in June 2018 and follows the Roy family — owners of Waystar RoyCo, a global media and entertainment conglomerate — who are fighting for control of the company amid uncertainty about the health of the family's patriarch, Logan Roy (Brian Cox). While deciding who will control the company when he ultimately steps down, family loyalties collide. The series also stars Jeremy Strong as Kendall Roy, Kieran Culkin as Roman Roy, Sarah Snook as Siobhan “Shiv” Roy and Nicholas Braun as cousin Greg Hirsch.
Following its debut, Succession quickly became a critically-acclaimed series, earning several awards and nominations over the years, including the Golden Globe for Best Television Series - Drama and the Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series in both 2020 and 2022. Cox, 76, and Strong, 44, also received individual Golden Globe awards for Best Actor - Television Series Drama in 2020 and 2022, respectively, while Snook, 35, nabbed a Globe win for Best Supporting Actress - Series, Miniseries or Television Film in 2022.
Strong and Matthew Macfadyen, who plays Snook’s husband, Tom Wambsgans, took home their own Primetime Emmy Awards for their performances in 2020. Armstrong, for his part, has three Emmy wins for Outstanding Writing for a Drama series.
The England native told the New Yorker on Thursday that he felt “conflicted” about the show wrapping up. “I feel sad, and I have the-circus-has-left-town feeling that everyone gets who works on a production that’s good, and this one particularly so,” he explained. “I imagine I’ll be a little bit lonely, and wandering the streets of London in a funk, and wondering, 'What the f—k did I do?' I’ll probably be calling you up in about six months asking if people are ready for a reboot.”
Succession's third season began airing in October 2021 and the show was renewed for a fourth — and now final — installment that same month. The season 3 finale ended with Shiv realizing that her husband betrayed her by reporting to her father behind her back. The revelation came after the sole female sibling and her two brothers, Logan and Kendall, failed to stop their dad from selling their company.
Following the season 3 premiere, Cox shared that while there are endless places the writers could take the family satire, it likely would come to a conclusion sooner rather than later.
“I would say possibly two more series and then I think we’re done. But it just depends and may just be only one more series. It depends what the writers feel. I know they’ve got an endgame. They haven’t told us what the ending is, but there is an endgame,” the Braveheart star told GQ UK in October 2021. “So it’s just how they get up to that endgame, whether it takes one series or two series. I think it’s going to be hard to let go of it this early. I think it needs a couple more series before it really comes to a culmination. That’s my feeling. Because its iconic nature is just hitting, I think people are going to want two more series, but they may only get one.”
Armstrong, meanwhile, revealed to Deadline in December 2021 that he has set plans for how the hit series would end.
“I have a pitch for where and how I think we end. It’s not immutable in respect to my colleagues, we’ll chat about it and how many seasons that plays out over,” he said. “Similarly I have a pitch, I don’t want to say in public as it will take away a little bit of the fun and I want to check in with all the important people around the show to see if we all feel the same.”