We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 release date speculation, plot, and more

Here's all you need to know about The Handmaid's Tale season 5 release date, the plot details, and major casting announcements for the Hulu series

The Handmaid's Tale season 5 release date

When is The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 release date? The dystopian sci-fi series just keeps on going, with the story having now developed beyond the books upon which it is based. The hugely popular TV series seemingly has more to give, with Elisabeth Moss and her fellow child-bearing slaves set for more harrowing subjugation in the fifth season of the show.

Since first airing in April 2017, the drama series has won the praise of critics and awards bodies alike, becoming the first show produced by Hulu to win a major award, and the first from a streaming service to win the Emmy for Outstanding Drama Series. Understandably, fans can’t wait for news of The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 release date, and we have gathered all the information we can to equip you for the next instalment.

The Handmaid’s Tale is based on the 1985 novel by Margaret Atwood, and tells the story of a harsh, dystopian future where a second American Civil War has led to a sexist totalitarian society which forces women to bear children. It’s not an easy watch, but it is exceptional television.

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 release date speculation

As it stands, there has been no confirmed The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 release date. We do know that production is underway, however, with actor Amanda Brugel sharing a video from the set on her Instagram. With this in mind, we reckon season 5 will air in late 2022.

The Handmaid’s Tale was confirmed for a season 5 before season 4 had even aired, which suggests the team behind the hit show have a good idea of the long-term plan.

It remains to be seen if this will be the final season, however, with showrunner Bruce Miller telling Deadline he is “not going to rush off, because as long as I am writing for Elisabeth Moss, it really doesn’t get much better.”

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 trailer speculation

With production still ongoing, there is no trailer for The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 just yet. Once production ends and some time has been spent in the editing room, a trailer will not be too far away.

The shoot began in February 2022 according to Ann Dowd when speaking to The Independent, so we imagine that will wrap up fairly soon. We suspect a trailer will arrive towards the end of summer 2022, ahead of a potential winter release date.

YouTube Thumbnail

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 Plot speculation

With a show like The Handmaid’s Tale, any plot details are kept under wraps pretty securely ahead of a new season, but one thing’s for sure; season 5 is likely to focus pretty heavily on the aftermath of Fred Waterford’s murder.

June Osborne organised and enacted her deadly revenge on Waterford in season 4, along with her allies from Gilead, but that doesn’t mean the trauma is over. Will the women’s actions weigh heavily on their conscience? Will Fred’s wife, Serena, avenge his death? These questions will be crucial to The Handmaid’s Tale season 5.

Pick up a book: The best movies based on books

Unfortunately, we can’t even look to the source material for clues, given the fact that The Handmaid’s Tale has now surpassed the storylines from the original book. And, by the sounds of it, they’re not finished with the TV show yet.

“We talked about it, and [Elisabeth Moss] and I have talked about it, and the writing staff and I have talked about it extensively, about where we’re going precisely, but I do feel like after this year, it’s a good time to reassess,” showrunner Bruce Miller told The Hollywood Reporter.

Handmaiden's Tale season 5 release date: Elisabeth Moss as June Osborne in The Handmaid's Tale

While that does sound like the end is near, we doubt very much that Miller and his team would be looking to reassess after season 5, if this had any chance of being the final season. So, don’t expect all the loose threads to be tied up in this next season.

Speaking to The Independent, Ann Dowd, who plays Aunt Lydia in The Handmaid’s Tale, has promised fans that she has “read the first couple of episodes and all I can say is they’re so good. I just didn’t see any of this stuff coming.”

How dramatic! The best drama movies of all time

Star Elisabeth Moss, too, has teased fans with her talk of season 5, in an interview with TVLine, where she described the upcoming instalment as “one of the wilder rides we’ve had.” The actor didn’t give anything away, but it sounds like season 5 could be pretty explosive!

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 cast speculation

While nothing official has been announced just yet, everything points to all the major cast members returning for The Handmaid’s Tale season 5. The key factor, of course, is that Elisabeth Moss will return in the lead role as June Osborne.

Despite June’s escape to Canada in season 4, we expect the main characters who are still in Gilead will still have a big part to play in the next season. That includes Emily (Alexis Bledel), Janine (Madeline Brewer), Rita (Amanda Brugel), and Moira (Samira Wiley).

One character who will not be returning is Fred Waterford (Joseph Fiennes). At the end of season 4, June and her fellow survivors finally got their brutal revenge on the Commander. There is potential for him to appear in flashbacks though, with showrunner Bruce Miller teasing as such in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.

However, Serena Joy Waterford (Yvonne Strahovski) has matters to take care of in the wake of her husband’s death, so we certainly expect to see her back again.

Dystopian worlds: The best sci-fi movies of all time

We also know that Ann Dowd will reprise her role as Aunt Lydia, after the actor confirmed she was commencing shooting for season 5 back in February.

The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 cast:

  • Elisabeth Moss as June Osborne
  • Yvonne Strahovski as Serena Joy Waterford
  • Ann Dowd as Aunt Lydia
  • Bradley Whitford as Commander Lawrence
  • Alexis Bledel as Emily
  • Madeline Brewer as Janine
  • O-T Fagbenle as Luke
  • Max Minghella as Nick
  • Samira Wiley as Moira
  • Amanda Brugel as Rita

That’s all we know about The Handmaid’s Tale season 5 right now, but as more information appears, we will be sure to keep you in the loop. In the meantime, why not dive into another strange world, with our guide to Stranger Things season 4.