Fans have been patiently waiting for news on the second season of fantasy drama A Discovery of Witches, which made its television debut almost two years ago.
The good news is that the wait for new episodes is nearly over, as the shooting has wrapped on a brand new season which is expected to air before the end of the year.
Based on the All Souls novel series by Deborah Harkness, A Discovery of Witches follows the unlikely partnership between a historian and a vampire, formed after a magical manuscript is found in a library at Oxford University.
Shot in Wales at Bad Wolf studios, a space opened by former Doctor Who producers Jane Tranter and Julie Gardner, the series stars Teresa Palmer (Ride Like A Girl) and Matthew Goode (Downton Abbey) in the lead roles.
In an interview with RadioTimes.com, they discussed the work that went into making season one, including the pressure they felt adapting such a beloved series of books.
The series was renewed for a second season shortly after it premiered, which will see the Discovery of Witches cast reprise their roles for a time-hopping adventure through Elizabethan London.
Tranter said: “We were absolutely thrilled that A Discovery of Witches was such a hit with viewers. There was a real sense of community throughout the run as fans old and new joined together to watch each week.
“We cannot wait to continue the journey with them and, as the show continues to sell around the world, bring a global fanbase to these engaging and fascinating characters.”
Here’s everything you need to know about A Discovery of Witches season two:
When is A Discovery of Witches season 2 release date?
There’s no confirmed release date for the second season of A Discovery of Witches, but the series is expected to return at some point before the end of the year.
According to director Farren Blackburn, the second season wrapped filming in late January 2020, meaning it should have been able to avoid any major delays caused by the subsequent coronavirus pandemic.
It’s possible that the lockdown may have slowed post-production and editing on the series, but it’s still quite probable that the show will be able to make an air date in late 2020.
Who is in the cast of A Discovery of Witches?
Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer will be reprising their roles in A Discovery of Witches season two, as young historian Diana Bishop and centuries-old vampire Matthew Clairmont.
Victoria star Tom Hughes is joining the cast for the new episodes, set to play real-life Elizabethan playwright Christopher Marlowe, whose work is still performed and studied to this day.
“I’m looking forward to stepping into Deborah’s fantastical world to play such a fascinating man as Kit Marlowe,” Hughes told RadioTimes.com. “With a rich history to draw from, Kit’s darkness and mercurial nature will be delight to delve into.”
Sky later announced a slate of brand new additions to the cast, most notably Sheila Hancock (Unforgotten) as experienced witch Goody Alsop, James Purefoy (Sex Education) as vampire Philippe and Steven Cree (Outlander) as Matthew’s nephew, Gallowglass.
Lindsay Duncan also stars in the series as Matthew’s mother Ysabeau, with Doctor Who’s Alex Kingston playing a key role as Diana’s aunt and guardian Sarah Bishop.
In addition, Louise Brealey, Owen Teale, Aisling Loftus, Greg McHugh, Elarica Johnson and Valarie Pettiford feature in the supporting cast.
What is A Discovery of Witches about?
Teresa Palmer and Matthew Goode in in A Discovery of Witches (Sky)
While we wouldn’t want to give too much away, the second series will be based on Harkness’ already-released book Shadow of Night, and on the author’s website the plot is summarised as follows:
“Book Two of the All Souls Trilogy plunges Diana and Matthew into Elizabethan London, a world of spies and subterfuge, and a coterie of Matthew’s old friends, the mysterious School of Night.
“The mission is to locate a witch to tutor Diana and to find traces of Ashmole 782, but as the net of Matthew’s past tightens around them they embark on a very different journey, one that takes them into heart of the 1,500 year old vampire’s shadowed history and secrets. For Matthew Clairmont, time travel is no simple matter; nor is Diana’s search for the key to understanding her legacy.”
Given the end of season one it seems likely that the new series will follow this storyline fairly closely, though as with season one there may be some divergences – including a new subplot that sees Ysabeau join forces with Diana’s witch aunts.
“Back in the present day, Diana’s beloved aunts, Sarah and Em, must take shelter with notorious witchhunter Ysabeau de Clermont at her ancestral home, Sept-Tours,” Sky said in a tease of the second series.
“Meanwhile, in Oxford, Marcus and Miriam take on Matthew’s mantle to protect daemons Nathaniel and Sophie, whose pregnancy is advancing. And Gerbert, Knox, Satu and Domenico are determined to hunt down every clue they can to Diana’s and Matthew’s disappearance, and the secrets their allies are keeping from them.”
Is there a trailer A Discovery of Witches?
Not just yet, but we can expect to see one relatively soon. Rest assured, we’ll update this page when the trailer drops.
Who is writing A Discovery of Witches season 2?
Doctor Who scribe Sarah Dollard, known for episodes like Face the Raven and Thin Ice, has been tapped to write the second season, alongside The Musketeers’ Susie Conklin
Will there be a Discovery of Witches season 3?
There will indeed! The announcement about the show’s second-season pickup also revealed that a third season has been greenlit, based on the final instalment in the All Souls trilogy: The Book of Life.
After that, we might assume the series will come to a natural conclusion, but who knows? In a world of magic, anything can happen…
If you’re looking for something else to watch, check out our TV Guide.