Season 4 of ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Begins Filming in March 2020

The third season of The Handmaid’s Tale ended in August 2019. Since the completion of the most recent season, fans have anxiously awaited any information about season 4 of The Handmaid’s Tale. Now fans of the show finally have some new developments. According to IATSE 873, season 4 of The Handmaid’s Tale will begin filming in March 2020.

The Handmaid's Tale season 4
Elisabeth Moss plays June in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ | Erik Voake/Getty Images for Hulu

Season 4 of ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ begins filming next year

IATSE 873 is an organization of people who work behind the scenes in media productions based in the U.S. and Canada. IATSE 873’s website lists TV shows and films currently in production in Canada. The Handmaid’s Tale is listed under its production code name, “Redbird.” According to IATSE 873, the show will film from March 2, 2020 to July 24, 2020 in Toronto.

Season 4 of ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ will have a later release date

While the show previously premiered in the spring and summer, it looks like season 4 of The Handmaid’s Tale will have a fall premiere date. Season 1 of the show filmed from September 2016 to February 2017. The first season premiered in April 2017.

Season 2 of The Handmaid’s Tale filmed from September 2017 to February 2018. Like the first season, it also had an April release date and came out on April 25, 2018. Season 3 filmed from October 2018 to March 2019, but unlike previous seasons it had a June release date instead of April. The third season of The Handmaid’s Tale premiered on June 5, 2019.

Even though the most recent season of The Handmaid’s Tale ended in August 2019, the show did not immediately begin filming season 4. With filming taking about five months, the next season of The Handmaid’s Tale will most likely not come out on Hulu until fall 2020.

The show will film during the summer

In The Handmaid’s Tale, most of the characters are split between living in Canada and living in a district of Gilead that was previously Boston. Because previous seasons filmed during the winter, the show often featured heavy winters as well.

This will be the show’s first time filming through the summer months. Incorporating winter often added to the bleakness of the show. However, based on how season 3 of the The Handmaid’s Tale ended, it seems the show will embrace rebellion and hope more so than in past seasons. Filming in the summer could be a creative way to carry over that change in tone.

Why is filming for ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ delayed?

The Handmaid’s Tale is based on Margaret Atwood’s novel of the same name. Atwood released the novel in 1985, and it became a timeless classic. In September 2019, Atwood released a sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale titled The Testaments. Because Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale ties into and follows Atwood’s original novel, the plot of The Testaments is important to the show.

Wendy Hallam-Martin is an editor of the show and appeared on Mayday: The Handmaid’s Tale Podcast. On the podcast, Hallam-Martin discussed the upcoming production of season 4 of The Handmaid’s Tale. It seems filming of season 4 is delayed in order to give writers of the show enough time to incorporate the plot of The Testaments into the show.

“I don’t think they’ll start production until March,” she said. “… they’re already writing so it’s gonna take a while to act out the next season, and then we have Margaret Atwood’s new book coming along, The Testaments.”