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The Split season 3: Release date rumours and latest news on Nicola Walker's BBC One drama

Creator Abi Morgan says the drama was always "conceived as three" – but how will she wrap up The Split?

The Split
Published: Tuesday, 19th October 2021 at 12:48 pm

BBC One divorce drama The Split is going out with a bang, with its creator and BAFTA-winning writer Abi Morgan (Suffragette) set to make her directorial debut on the third and final season.


In a statement announcing the news, she said: "So much of a writer’s life is solitary that it has been a complete joy to direct and to finally get to work with the brilliant cast and crew and be part of the magic that happens between first read through and final edit that I normally don’t get to see."

Morgan, who has created and wrote all three seasons, previously said that the show had "always been conceived as three," and now it's time to see how the story ends.

The drama is based around London's high-end divorce circuit, and follows the three Defoe sisters – in particular, eldest sister Hannah's unravelling marriage to husband Nathan (played by Nicola Walker and Stephen Mangan, respectively).

Walker said in a statement: “I can’t wait to be back in the Defoe Family, we are all looking forward to the journey Abi has planned for us. I don’t know if Hannah will cling to the wreckage or walk away, but I do know it’s going to be a fantastic ride.”

Creator Abi Morgan has also promised “the most dramatic and heart-breaking series to date” as Walker's character, a cut-throat divorce lawyer, is faced with her own separation.

Read on for everything you need to know about The Split season three.

The Split season 3 release date

The third season of The Split will air on BBC One, but there's no release date confirmed yet - we'll keep this page updated. Filming began in June 2021.

The second series averaged over six million viewers and over 19 million streams, becoming the third most watched drama series on BBC iPlayer in 2020.

The Split series 3 stars filming

The Split season 3 cast: Who is returning?

The majority of The Split season 2 cast have now been confirmed for season three, including the Defoe sisters, Hannah (Nicola Walker), Nina (Annabel Scholey), and Rose (Fiona Button), and their formidable mother Ruth (Deborah Findlay). Also returning are Stephen Mangan as Hannah's (soon-to-be-ex) husband Nathan, and Barry Atsma as Christie – Hannah's affair partner.

And for season three, there's a high-profile new addition to the cast. Lara Pulver will play Kate, "a leading child psychologist whose arrival adds a whole new layer of complexity to Morgan’s multi-layered examination of divorce and modern marriage." Pulver has previously been seen in Sherlock (as Irene Adler), Spooks, True Blood, The Alienist, and Da Vinci's Demons.

The Split season 3 plot

We're told: "This farewell series, equal parts electrifying, witty and heart-breaking, continues to put the Defoe sisters and their matriarch at its heart; a group of powerful women working together to help their clients, their colleagues and each other as they continue to navigate the messiness of life."

Set 10 months after Nathan and Hannah's marriage ended and the extent of her betrayal is revealed, the two professional divorce lawyers are negotiating their divorce. However, as the stakes become clear, Hannah realises how much she could lose.

BBC teases a “shocking revelation that dramatically changes the stakes," adding: “Battle lines are redrawn, their dream of achieving the ‘good divorce’ is left in tatters.”

Abi Morgan said: “It’s great to be back writing for the Defoe Family, and to dive once more into to the complications of their lives and those of their clients. In the final series of this bittersweet trilogy, Hannah faces the heartbreak of her own divorce, and the fight to save her family and her marriage. Siblings clash, past mistakes are exposed and hearts are broken as Noble Hale and Defoe notches up more billable hours in the divorce capital of the world.”


The Split will return to BBC One, and series one and two are available to stream on BBC iPlayer. Take a look at what else is on with our TV guide


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