Without a doubt, one of last summer's buzziest shows was The White Lotus—HBO's star-studded social satire set at a plush Hawaiian result. In addition to the buzz, the first season was critically acclaimed, recently scoring 20 Emmy nominations.
Though the season's ending wraps up fairly definitively, that does not preclude future installments of the hit series—and some beloved characters returning for another chapter. In fact, HBO already announced a second season for The White Lotus, though it will look fairly different from the past six episodes.
Mike White, the show's creator, is set to deliver more dark humor, though he'll continue the series in an anthology format, with new characters and a new destination. Here, we break down everything we know about The White Lotus's second season.
Prior to the airing of the season one finale, HBO announced that The White Lotus would return for a second installment.
Francesca Orsi, Executive Vice President, HBO Programming wrote in a press release, “Mike [White] has once again delivered a quintessential HBO show, and it’s the talk of the town. We were thrilled to hear where he wanted to go next, after closing this epic chapter in Hawaii, and can’t wait to keep following him wherever he takes us.”
The second season will be titled White Lotus: Sicily, and follows the critically acclaimed first season. The show earned 20 Emmy nominations—including eight nods in the acting categories.
Though The White Lotus is returning, viewers will not venture back to the same Hawaiian resort. The show will continue anthology style, with a new group of travelers, a new staff, and a hotel someplace else in the world. HBO announced, "The next chapter of The White Lotus leaves Hawaii behind and follows a different group of vacationers as they jet to another White Lotus property and settle in temporarily amongst its inhabitants."
The first announced stars of The White Lotus season two were Michael Imperioli and Aubrey Plaza, to play married couple Harper and Ethan Spiller. Meghann Fahy and Theo James will play husband and wife Cameron and Daphne Babcock, a couple vacationing with the Spillers. As Plaza says, "most of my story is a separate story. I play a woman who’s married and we’re on vacation with another couple. Our story exists with our little foursome, but there are moments when some of the characters overlap, like in the first season."
The rest of the cast is stacked. The Hollywood Reporter, F. Murray Abraham will play Bert Di Grasso, an elderly man traveling with his son, Dominic (Michael Imperioli) and grandson, Albie (Adam DiMarco). Tom Hollander will take on the role of English expat Quentin, while Haley Lu Richardson will play Portia, a young woman who is traveling with her boss.
In March 2022, with filming underway, HBO announced three Italian actors will be joining the cast. Sabrina Impacciatore will play Valentina, the manager of the White Lotus resort, and Beatrice Grannó and Simona Tabasco will play Mia and Lucia, respectively, two local Italian girls who hang around the Sicily hotel.
As soon as season two was announced, fans began speculating as to where the next entry of the show might take place. White offered a few impromptu suggestions of his own, telling IndieWire, "It would have to be a different hotel, like, say, ‘The White Lotus: San Tropez’ or something," he noted. To Entertainment Weekly, White suggested White Lotus: Kyoto, "which would be fun too, because we could get into culture clash ideas and stuff like that."
However, in January Variety finally broke the news that the second season of The White Lotus would be heading to Italy. Specifically, the show will be filming in Sicily, with sources telling the publication that the Four Seasons San Domenico Palace will feature as the fictional Italian White Lotus resort as the Four Seasons Resort Maui did for its Hawaiian counterpart in season one.
Production officially began in Sicily in February 2022, and is wrapping up in July 2022.
Aubrey Plaza shared about the filming experience, telling Cosmopolitan, "It’s pretty wild. We’ve taken over this entire hotel.There’s an energy, for sure." She continued, "It’s cool how the location informs the show. Sicily is such a culturally rich place. I mean, there’s a literal volcano that has erupted since we’ve been here. It’s a very charged environment. It’s going to feel like that."
TVLine reported the news in mid-October, and HBO confirmed the star's return in February 2022. Coolidge will be the only regular to return from the first season of The White Lotus, and in July, she shared that season two "is a different show," adding it "is even more complicated than the first."
"For an actor to get a part like this; I got it twice. It’s unbelievable. I was standing under the lucky tree,” Coolidge told Deadline. "If nothing ever happens after this, I think I’ll be alright, I’ll still be fulfilled."
Though the cast of The White Lotus will mostly be new, in an interview with IndieWire, White did suggest that a few of the characters could come back a some point in season two. "I don’t think you can credibly have [all the season one guests] on the same vacation again," he said. "But maybe it could be a Marvel universe type thing, where some of them would come back." Coolidge is the only confirmed return.
Alongside Coolidge, the first season's cast included Connie Britton, Steve Zahn, Murray Bartlett, Alexandra Daddario, Jake Lacy, Molly Shannon, Sydney Sweeney, and Natasha Rothwell. White cited the logistics of getting the same group of actors together again. "We only made one-year deals with the actors," he said. "So we’d have to find out who is even available."
Reportedly, White had an idea for Britton's Nicole to return. "He wanted me to be in the second season, and there was an idea that I loved for the character. Our intention is to do it in the third season. A piece of casting didn’t work in the second season and we’re hoping to that in the third season. I would love to see a spinoff on every character in that show," the actress shared with Deadline.
In a preview of HBO Max's new shows, HBO shared a glimpse at The White Lotus season two. It's only three seconds long, but it shows Sabrina Impacciatore, who plays Valentina, the manager of the White Lotus resort (a.k.a. season two's Armond) saying: "Welcome to the White Lotus in Sicily." It also has glimpse of Aubrey Plaza and Will Sharpe, who play married couple Harper and Ethan Spiller, and Theo James and Meghann Fahy, who play Cameron and Daphne Babcock, clinking glasses on a dock.
Plus, Jennifer Coolidge—who is returning as Tanya—is shown riding on the back of a motorcycle with Jon Gries, who also appeared in season one as Greg, who falls for Tanya at the White Lotus in Hawaii. Watch here:
White Lotus: Sicily will reportedly premiere in time to be eligible for the 2023 Emmys, according to Casey Bloys, Chief Content Officer at HBO and HBO Max. Which means it will hit television screens before May 2023. There will be seven episodes in the season.
In the meantime, watch all of season one on HBO Max.