Fans of Amazon’s new fantasy epic Wheel Of Time can rest easy knowing that Moiraine’s (Rosamund Pike) journey will continue. In May, the show was renewed for a second season six months ahead of its series premiere.
“Getting a second season order before the first season has even premiered is such a vote of confidence in the work we are doing and the [Wheel of Time] property itself, and we couldn’t be happier to be able to continue to live and work in the world Robert Jordan created,” showrunner and executive producer Rafe Judkins said in a statement, per Variety. “This property is one I’ve loved since I was a teenager, and seeing it brought to life with the resources to make it truly worthy of what’s on the page is something I can’t wait for the other fans of the books to see. And Season 2 just keeps expanding the world we built in Season 1.”
Based on Jordan’s popular book series of the same name, Wheel of Time centers around Moiraine (Rosamund Pike), an immensely powerful member of an organization of women who can use magic. The first season follows her as she embarks on a globe-spanning voyage with five young villagers from the small town of Two Rivers — one of whom she believes to be the reincarnation of a figure called the Dragon who is prophesied to either save or destroy humanity.
There are 14 novels in the original series, which means Wheel of Time will likely need several seasons to tell the story to completion. Judkins told Deadline he sees the show running as long as eight seasons. “I always have to approach it as if we’re going to get to tell the whole story that’s in the books. If we don’t approach it that way, then we’d set ourselves up to not stick the landing and these books have such a good ending,” he said. “I really need to set us up to get there if we’re able to. That’s not up to me ultimately. If people watch it and Amazon wants to keep doing more, I’d love to continue to expand this world further.”
When Wheel of Time does return for its second season, fans are in for a major change. One of core characters, Mat Cauthon, was recast; he’ll now be played by Dónal Finn instead of Barney Harris. Though Judkins declined to explain the reason for the change, he doesn’t expect it will be too jarring of audiences. “It’s always hard but we’re really lucky that Barney is so great in the first season; I love him in the show,” Judkins told Deadline. “And Dónal Finn, who is playing Mat in Season 2, is amazing. I have seen him up on set doing his scenes now and they’re incredible and they fully capture the character.”
Other new faces have been added for Season 2 as well. According to an October report from Deadline, Ceara Coveney (The Amazing World of Emma), Natasha O’Keeffe (Peaky Blinders) and Meera Syal (Broadchurch) will all be joining the cast for Wheel of Time’s sophomore season.
A premiere date for Season 2 has not yet been announced, but filming for Season 1 began in September 2019 and wrapped in May 2021. That includes an extended delay amid lockdown, and filming for Season 2 started in July 2021. With that in mind, a return in mid to late 2022 seems reasonable.