‘Big Little Lies’ Season 3 Won’t Happen for These 3 Reasons

Big Little Lies – featuring an all-star ensemble including Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, and mega A-lister Meryl Streep – is a secrecy-infused splendor with a fanbase begging for more.

Big Little Lies – sometimes dramatic and soul-splitting, other times sassy and sardonic – equally balances suspense, humor, internal conflict, and dynamic interrelationships. Weaving an intricate tale on the back of the Monterey Five’s shared secret, the show explores motherhood, friendship, marriage, and self-care. 

'Big Little Lies' Cast
‘Big Little Lies’ Cast | Photo by Nicholas Hunt/WireImage

While audiences could watch Madeline Mackenzie and Mary Louise go head-to-head for seasons on end, a third season of Big Little Lies is probably not in the cards. Unfortunately, as HBO executive Casey Bloys explained, a follow-up to season two is “not realistic.”

Scheduling conflicts 

The Big Little Lies cast includes several of Hollywood’s most in-demand actresses. Working on a TV series requires a sizable time commitment and, given the performer’s upcoming projects, another season seems improbable due to scheduling conflicts alone.

Nicole Kidman is currently involved in another HBO series, The Undoing, which has already started filming and will premiere in 2020. Expecting Nicole Kidman to shoot two major HBO productions at the same time seems like Calendar confusion waiting to happen. 

Meryl Streep is set to appear in 2019’s Little Women and The Laundromat. She will also star in Ryan Murphy’s take on The Prom, as Dee Dee Allen. The Prom, currently on Broadway, is set to become a Netflix original with Meryl Streep as the lead female character.

Reese Witherspoon will star in the TV miniseries Little Fires Everywhere, premiering in 2020, while Shailene Woodley is set to appear in an untitled Drake Doremus project later this year. When push comes to shove, it’s unlikely that each and every pivotal member would be able to shift, spin, flip, and rotate their schedules to make a Big Little Lies season three happen.

Season two of ‘Big Little Lies’ is based on a Liane Moriarty novella, and she has not written content to follow

Big Little Lies season one is based on Liane Moriarty’s novel of the same name. Though a season two was never intended, the author was asked to continue her narrative following the HBO show’s positive reception.

David E. Kelley adapted the original novel into a screenplay; however, reports indicated that he would only write a second season if Moriarty agreed to write further content (as she was best suited for the job). Moriarty wrote a novella for David E. Kelley, which has served as the basis for season two. 

Unfortunately, unless Moriarty is keeping a secret from the public, she has not written additional Big Little Lies content. As for the season two novella, it is not available for sale, as it was created for the show specifically. However, maybe it will become available after the finale.

The third season of ‘Big Little Lies’  would likely fall short of its predecessors 

It’s always wise to go out on a high note. Considering Big Little Lies was not meant to be more than one season, the show should count its blessings. Moriarty created a continuation that felt logical and has proved equally captivating. However, what would be the next “big” drop.

Adding Meryl Streep’s character created an avenue for further exploration, as she entered the series with the intention to rock the boat. Further content – adding more characters or weaving side-stories off of the main narrative – would likely feel less inspired. 

The show has managed to keep its focus – the “lie” remains central to the unfolding story. If the show were to continue, it would grow further from the lie – and closer to a soap-opera – abandoning the central arc that is keeping it unique.