The Umbrella Academy season 3's production is underway, and fans are already eagerly anticipating what's next for Netflix's adaptation of the dysfunctional Hargreeves family. Last time out, the group had saved the world from annihilation again, but their expected time travel trip back home didn't exactly pan out as they had hoped.
There have been a couple of new snippets of information released in the past fortnight, including how season 3 filming is going courtesy of one of the series' stars. If you want more on the latest news about The Umbrella Academy season 3, then, you've come to the right place.
We're here to tell you when its expected release date is, as well as what the comics can tease about season 3's potential plot, new cast members, and more. Fair warning to those of you who aren't caught up on the previous two seasons. We're entering spoiler territory for the first two seasons from this point on, so turn back before the image below if you don't want Netflix's quirky superhero hit ruined for you.
The Umbrella Academy season 3 release date: when can we expect it?
Not any time soon. In November 2020, a tweet from The Umbrella Academy's official Twitter account revealed that filming wouldn't begin on season 3 until February. Confirmation that production would begin in Toronto, Canada, arrived in a Deadline report on the same day. It's unclear when shooting will wrap at this point - any end date will depend on potential Covid-19 factors - but the same Deadline article has alleged that filming will finish in September.
Oh my god! We're back! Again! It's official. Production for S3 of The Umbrella Academy begins in February pic.twitter.com/tZxyezzCOcNovember 10, 2020
Of course, Covid-19 could throw those plans out of the window. In an April interview with Collider, Tom Hopper - who plays Luther/Number One - revealed that season 3's production is taking longer than it should due to the pandemic. The actor revealed that the cast and crew had "shorter days" on set as a result of Covid-19 protocols, so the shoot's length would be "longer" than initially planned.
"We're not that far into it at the moment, so we've got a long way to go," Hopper said. "But it's good. The great thing is the material, the work is amazing, so every day on set is, like I say, a joy and so much fun.”
If the September production end date is met, we could see season 3 air in early 2022. As we say, that's entirely dependent on how well principal photography goes between now and then. Fingers crossed that there's very little upheaval on set, though, and season 3 is kept on track.
The Umbrella Academy season 3 trailer: is there one?
Unsurprisingly, no. As we mentioned, filming only begun in mid-February, so teaser or official trailers won't land for many months. If our suggested Q1 2022 release date ends up being true, we might get one around the 2021 holiday season, but not before then.
The Umbrella Academy season 3: what can we expect from the plot?
With two world-ending apocalypses already averted, there’s a good chance that preventing some kind of Armageddon will be on the agenda again. It would be a refreshing change of pace if it didn't but, considering that there's always an apocalyptic threat in the comics, expect another one in season 3.
What we do know is that The Umbrella Academy will butt heads with an eerily similar group of superpowered beings. The final scene of season 2 introduced us to The Sparrow Academy, a seemingly alternate reality group with their own set of abilities. The Sparrow Academy were introduced in the final moments of The Umbrella Academy's most recent graphic novel volume - Hotel Oblivion - so they aren't an original superhero group that's been developed for the show.
Before we dive into how The Sparrow Academy could factor into season 3, let's recap the end of season 2. Having spent the first season in their native 2019 before time traveling to the 1960s in season 2, the Hargreeves now find themselves in a parallel dimension. While they’ve seemingly got over many of their issues with one another, though, their lives aren’t about to get any easier.
In this reality, Sir Reginald Hargreeves – the surrogate dad whose death begrudgingly brought the siblings back together in season 1 – is alive in this alternate universe. “I knew you’d show up eventually,” he says when the group materialize in his mansion. And it doesn’t take long for his famously cold style of parenting to come to the fore, as he reveals that the familiar-looking house “isn’t your home”. It is, in fact, the headquarters of The Sparrow Academy.
Normally, The Sparrow Academy's floating green cube member would grab Luther et al's attention (more on this in a bit). To the shock of the group, though, Ben Hargreeves - the family's deceased brother who gave his life (again) to save Diego, Allison, Klaus, and Vanya in season 2 - is revealed to be The Sparrows' vice-captain. It isn't the lovable Ben that fans are used to either.
“Dad, who the hell are these assholes?” he asks. It's not a greeting you'd expect from Ben, so we can expect this version to be more impatient and less lovable than his predecessor.
The Umbrella Academy season 3 cast: which stars are returning?
As you might expect, the series' seven main cast members will be back for season 3:
- Elliot Page as Vanya Hargreeves/Number Seven
- Tom Hopper as Luther Hargreeves/Number One
- David Castenada as Diego Hargreeves/Number Two
- Emmy Raver-Lampman as Allison Hargreeves/Number Three
- Robert Sheehan as Klaus Hargreeves/Number Four
- Aidan Gallagher as Five/Number Five
- Justin H. Min as Ben Hargreeves/Number Six, but he'll be Number Two in The Sparrow Academy this time around
Colm Feore (Sir Reginald Hargreeves) and Ritu Arya (Lila Pitts) are also expected to return, but confirmation on that front is yet to be forthcoming. We may also see Adam Godley (Pogo the chimpanzee) and Jordan Claire Robbins (Grace Hargreeves/Mom) back as alternate-dimension forms of their Umbrella Academy counterparts but, again, we're yet to see an announcement on their returns.
The Umbrella Academy season 3: who has been cast as The Sparrow Academy?
Spoilers for The Umbrella Academy comic book volume 3: Hotel Oblivion.
This is where things get interesting. Hotel Oblivion's ending only gives us one real name and one moniker, with the latter being the group's leader aka Number One. The only other Sparrow Academy name that the comics gives us is Carla, who takes Vanya to meet the group before they rescue The Umbrella Academy from being defeated by a seemingly endless number of supervillains.
Unfortunately, it doesn't look like Carla will feature in season 3 - unless her reveal is being held back - as Netflix has already confirmed The Sparrow Academy's cast and their names. Here is who you can expect to see as the superhero group in season 3:
- Justin Cornwell as Marcus Hargreeves/Number One
- Britne Oldford as Fei Hargreeves/Number Three
- Jake Epstein as Alphonso Hargreeves/Number Four
- Genesis Rodriguez as Sloane Hargreeves/Number Five
- Cazzie David as Jayme Hargreeves/Number Six
According to Netflix (as reported by IGN), The Sparrow Academy members will differ in some from their Umbrella Academy counterparts.
Marcus is said to be a born leader who is "as smart as he is strong", while Ben is a "Machiavellian tactician" who is focused on usurping Marcus as leader. Fei is a misanthrope who, despite her tough exterior, longs for friends, and Alphonso is a pizza-loving, beer-swilling humorous individual who bears physical and mental scars from years of fighting crime.
Sloane is a "romantic" who "feels a higher cosmic being" calling to her, while Jayme is a lone-wolf who enjoys giving out "fear-inducing snarls" at anyone she deems below her. We'll also be getting Christopher/Number Seven, who is the group's existential dread-inducing psykronium cube, but there's no word yet on who will be voicing this team member.
Steve Blackman, The Umbrella Academy showrunner, has also teased a storyboard image of the Sparrow Academy members on Instagram. This sketch doesn't give anything away, as you'd expect, but it's cool nonetheless.
Check out the image below:
What questions does The Umbrella Academy season 3 need to answer?
Spoilers for The Umbrella Academy comic books and season 2 on Netflix.
Over the course of just two seasons, The Umbrella Academy has built up an intriguingly complex mythology, and that means plenty of questions to answer.
Fans of the TV series still don't know why 43 children were unexpectedly born on October 1, 1989, to mothers who weren’t pregnant when the day began. Or even what happened to most of those kids. Gerard Way's and Gabriel Bá's comics reveal how this came to be in the opening pages of volume one - Apocalypse Suite - but, in case this revelation comes to light in the show, we won't divulge it just yet.
In the comics, 13 of that number are known as The Umbrella and Sparrow Academy members. However, the show also introduced Lila as a potential 14th who we haven't seen in the graphic novels yet. That means that there are still 30 and 29 - depending on the medium of your choice - who are yet to be revealed. The problem now, of course, is that the TV series could move ahead of the comics - like Game of Thrones did - and unveil those individuals, or plot points that may come to the comics in the future. Either way, we might see more superheroes - or supervillains - emerge as part of season 3.
We also don't know why Ben doesn't recognize his siblings from the old timeline, even though Sir Reginald does. And why is he no longer a spirit? “He’s alive and not a ghost,” Min confirmed at a Cable Telecommunications Association for Marketing panel (reported by Syfy Wire). "Hopefully, if we get a season 3, you’ll get to see he has quite a different personality and appearance.”
Spoiler alert: There are 43 sparrows hidden throughout Season 2 of @UmbrellaAcad. Bet you can't tell us where they all are. pic.twitter.com/YFM4WiapBTAugust 6, 2020
Then there’s questions over season 2's other big reveal. Since he removed his human mask, we now know that Sir Reginald Hargreeves is an alien. Again, the comics reveal his true identity in Apocalypse Suite's first few pages, and this one we can spoil due to the finale's revelation. In the comics, Sir Reginald is a world-renowned scientist, entrepreneur, inventor, and Olympic gold medalist. Oh, and a space alien. His true form hasn't been revealed in the graphic novels yet, but it's nailed on that the TV series will show that at this point.
Harlan, Missy's kid who is shown to have telekinetic powers at the end of season 2, is also a major mystery. If - and it's a big if - he has an alternate version in The Sparrow Academy's universe, he could end up being a friend or foe to them and The Umbrella Academy.
There's also the fact that we don't know who the villain is for season 3. With The Commission under new, friendlier leadership following The Handler's supposed death in season 2, it's unlikely that they'll be the bad guys again. How about, then, if season 3 starts introducing the comics' supervillains into its TV adaptation? It's possible that The Sparrow Academy are dealing with a threat far bigger than any that The Umbrella Academy has - you know, discounting two apocalypses - which means the Sparrows would need the latter's help.
What could that threat be? Well, any number of the superpowered bad guys in the comics. Dr. Terminal, The Perseus Corporation or even a fellow superhero like The Scientific Man would be major adversaries for the teams. Something of that ilk that would require them to eventually set their differences aside and team up would make for a pleasing season 3 plot line.