- The Idol season finale aired on July 2, 2023.
- The first season consisted of 5 episodes.
- The Idol was canceled after just one season in Aug. 2023.
The Idol has had a controversial run, to say the least. During the show’s 5 episode tenure with Lily-Rose Depp and The Weeknd leading the way, the Sam Levinson series shocked viewers with sex, torture, and major cult vibes. The show’s first season came to an end on July 2 and left things open for a second season to a certain extent, but in Aug. 2023, it was announced by Deadline that the show had been canceled.
‘The Idol was one of HBO’s most provocative original programs, and we’re pleased by the strong audience response,” an HBO spokesperson said in a statement. “After much thought and consideration, HBO, as well as the creators and producers, have decided not to move forward with a second season. We’re grateful to the creators, cast, and crew for their incredible work.”
Find out more about why there most likely won’t be a season 2 and what the cast previously said about the show’s future below.
Why There Won’t Be A Season 2 Of The Idol
HBO just revealed that The Idol will not return for season 2. The show had a short run at just 5 episodes after previously being greenlit for 6 episodes. When promoting the finale, HBO didn’t call it the “series finale.” However, in a GQ profile, The Weeknd described The Idol as a “five-hour film,” which is what made viewers first believe that there wouldn’t be a season 2.
After the second episode aired, Page Six reported that the show would end after just one season. “This was never meant to be a long-running show, it was always … a limited series,” a source told the outlet. However, an HBO source stressed that the “door is definitely still open — it’s definitely not a decision [yet]. At this point, this is normal in our process … we’re only two episodes in.”
It is being misreported that a decision on a second season of The Idol has been determined. It has not, and we look forward to sharing the next episode with you Sunday night.
— HBO PR (@HBOPR) June 15, 2023
In June 2023, before the season ended, HBO PR Twitter account also tweeted, “It is being misreported that a decision on a second season of The Idol has been determined. It has not, and we look forward to sharing the next episode with you Sunday night.”
Since the show received a lot of criticism, it’s not too surprising HBO decided to not continue with it. The cancellation comes comes more than a month after Selena Gomez, who previously dated The Weeknd, was reportedly ‘irked’ that her real life was seemingly the basis of Lily-Rose’s character Jocelyn.
What The Cast Has Said About The Idol Season 2
Despite the cancellation, Da’Vine Joy Randolph, who played Jocelyn’s co-manager Destiny in the HBO series, told Vulture ahead of the finale that the final season 1 episode was “intentionally” setting up a second season.
“I see season 1 as setting up the world in great detail and character development, to set up a season 2 where it’s like, now we’re really going to get in the sh*t,” the actress said. “When you finish a project, it’s always like, ‘Is there a possibility for season 2?’ And they’re always like, ‘Yeah, for sure!’
She continued, “It’s everyone’s desire and intention to do a season 2, and until we hear differently, that’s the plan. But I know it hasn’t been, like, officially announced. But definitely when we ended, from what I know, HBO has been very pleased and into it and there hasn’t been anything against it yet, to be like, ‘No, we’re pulling the plug.’”
Da’Vine also told Variety, “I think that everyone’s intention is to have a second season. This was never intended to be a limited series. Nothing is official, but HBO is quite happy.”
What Would Have Been The Idol Season 2 Cast
If The Idol wasn’t canceled and returned for a second season, we would have likely seen Lily-Rose and The Weeknd return as Jocelyn and Tedros. Her inner circle, including Troye Sivan as Xander, Moses Sumney as Izaak, and Suzanna Son as Chloe, were also expected to come back, as well as Hank Azaria, Jane Adams, and Da’Vine Joy.
Given how Leia left a note for Jocelyn as she packed her bags, it’s unlikely that Rachel Sennott would have returned. Jennie Ruby Jane’s Dyanne was dismissed by Nikki in the finale, so unless she was planning a comeback, Dyanne would have probably faded away.
How Did The Idol Season 1 End?
The Idol season 1 finale ended with Jocelyn kicking off her tour after working on new music with Tedros and his followers. After finding out how Tedros orchestrated meeting her through Dyanne, Jocelyn seemingly wanted Tedros out of her life for good. She had Chaim get rid of him and went along planning her tour with Chloe, Xander, Izaak, and the others.
Ahead of the opening night of her tour, Tedros showed up at the stadium looking for his artist’s pass. Destiny warned Tedros not to mess with Jocelyn, or there would be hell to pay. Jocelyn admitted that she missed Tedros and wanted to get back together. As much as we would have liked for her to move on from him, Tedros became Jocelyn’s muse. She used him for her own gain, and the finale showed just how far Jocelyn was willing to go to find inspiration (including lying about her mom’s abuse).
When Jocelyn took the stage, she introduced Tedros as the love of her life. They shared a kiss before she told him to stand in the shadows as she took in the spotlight. While Tedros (and viewers) thought Jocelyn was under his spell, Jocelyn was in control all along.
“Jocelyn is a very strategic and calculated person. She knows exactly what she wants, and she’s going to stop at nothing to get it,” Lily-Rose said in a behind-the-scenes interview.
She added, “I think a lot of the audience will watch maybe the first few episodes and think that this guy is taking advantage of her. By the end, he realizes that she knows exactly what he’s doing and she knows exactly what she’s doing.” Creator Sam noted, “She needs to devour those around her to feel like she’s got something to say.”