The White Lotus season 3: Release date, cast, plot as returning actor confirmed
Ready for another luxury escape? Here's all we know about our next White Lotus trip
The second season of HBO's The White Lotus may have only recently come to a close but eager audiences are already looking ahead to the show’s hotly anticipated third series.
Devised and written by School of Rock scribe Mike White, this show about excess introduces viewers to a handful of rich faces who are each visiting a fictional White Lotus holiday resort.
So far, each outing has stayed at a different picturesque location while featuring an all-new ensemble cast, with Jennifer Coolidge’s eccentric and wealthy fan-favourite Tanya emerging as the only cast member to return for both series.
2021’s debut season brought us to sunkissed Hawaii while 2022’s second batch of episodes transported the drama to romantic Italy — but what about The White Lotus series three?
It’s early days but here’s everything we know so far…
Where will The White Lotus season three be set?
The official synopsis for The White Lotus season three hasn’t been unveiled. However, recent reports seem to suggest that series creator White could be taking his story to Thailand.
As per a report on Variety, the show’s latest trip could be heading East to one of its Four Season hotels.
It was this same resort chain that was used for the luxurious backdrop of The White Lotus’s Hawaii and Italy storylines. As such, the outlet has suggested that series three could visit one of Thailand’s four expansive Four Seasons properties.
Read more on Variety: The White Lotus Season 3 will be set in Thailand (2 min read)
With venues in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Koh Samui and the Golden Triangle — it’s still very much up in the air as to which will become a brand new White Lotus.
However, according to the same story, each of Thailand’s Four Seasons hotels features a variety of backdrops — including beach, country and jungle — which would surely provide ample settings for interesting storylines.
Who is starring in the third series of The White Lotus?
Given its ever-changing ensemble cast, it's still a little too early to know who will be appearing in The White Lotus series three and what roles they'll be playing.
That said, we do know that one familiar face will be returning to the franchise. As per The Independent, a representative for actor Natasha Rothwell confirmed that she will reprise her role of Belinda in White's third outing.
Fans may remember Belinda as the spa host that treated Jennifer Coolidge's Tanya to a life-changing massage back in the show's first, Hawaii-set series.
In fact, the massage was so good that Tanya decided to go into business with Belinda to fund a new spa enterprise and potentially transform her life before ultimately backing out on the promise at the last minute due to her fickle and unpredictable nature and the arrival of Jon Gries's Greg.
Considering the tragic events of The White Lotus series two, it's unlikely that Coolidge will return to the show — but perhaps Tanya made good on her promise in her will? Only time will tell regarding this theory.
Looking further ahead, White commented on the idea of one day doing an "all stars" series, featuring key returning cast members. “If the show goes on for a couple of seasons, it would be fun to have an all-star season," he told The Hollywood Reporter.
What is the plot of The White Lotus season three?
Much like its location, it’s a little too early to ascertain any concrete plot details. That said, White has teased some information as to what we can expect to find when this Emmy-winning series returns.
Following the dark climax of season two, White has suggested that season three could continue in this vein of storytelling, citing “death and Eastern religion and spirituality” as a possible theme.
“The first season kind of highlighted money, and then the second season is sex,” White explained during a promotional clip for season two. “I think the third season would be maybe a satirical and funny look at death and Eastern religion and spirituality.
“It feels like it could be a rich tapestry to do another round at White Lotus.”
These rumours would match up nicely with similar quotes White provided to Deadline which also pointed towards an Asia-set storyline.
*The White Lotus season two spoilers ahead*
Regarding series two dramatic finale — which culminated in series favourite Tanya tragically dying following a shoot-out with a group of Italian criminals while aboard a boat at sea — White has planted seeds that suggest this dark thread could be picked up further down the line.
“It’s possible that Portia [Haley Lu Richardson] is scared enough to just leave it alone,” said White, discussing Tanya’s young assistant who survived the harrowing experience, “but the fact that all of those guys die on the boat, it feels like there’s gotta be somebody who’s gonna track it down to Greg [Jon Gries].
“But maybe you’ll have to wait to find out what happens.”
Read more on Deadline: HBO exec says pitch for White Lots S3 'is great' (3 min read)
It was Gries character Greg who played Tanya’s love interest, and the person who was seemingly responsible for setting up the tragic events that led to his new wife’s death. However, it’s currently unlikely — but not out of the question — that Coolidge will return for The White Lotus’s third series.
Meanwhile, during a recent appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, season one star Murray Bartlett, who played highly-strung White Lotus concierge Armond, also hinted at a possible return — albeit, in prequel form.
“I would definitely do it,” The Last of Us Star told Colbert, before adding that he’s had conversations with White regarding a potential spin-off series. “We could always go back in time,’” he teased, recalling the discussion.
White further discussed the season's Thailand-set third season with The Hollywood Reporter, suggesting that the show doesn't always need to start with its 'body in a box' conceit.
I don’t think it needs to always be a body,” he teased. “There are so many ways that we want to reinvent the show each year. Like, what is this show — other than people? A fresh mystery, people maybe expect that. But I don’t feel constrained by expectation. It’s fun.”
When will The White Lotus season three be released?
With production yet to officially begin, we’re still a ways away from seeing The White Lotus season three on our TV screens. However, it’s expected to arrive in either late 2023 or early 2024.
The White Lotus season three is expected to air in late 2023 or early 2024.