Universal is throwing a big premiere for Blockers tonight in Hollywood and while the film’s young star Kathryn Newton is halfway around the world filming Detective Pikachu in London, I imagine there will be more than a few people in that audience wondering whether she’ll be back for the second season of BIG LITTLE LIES. To that end, HBO has just announced her return, as well as the returns of Sarah Sokolovic, Robin Weigert and Merrin Dungey. Newton and Sokolovic will be back as series regulars, while Weigert and Dungey will serve as recurring guest stars.
Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern and Zoe Kravitz return for the second season, as do Adam Scott, James Tupper, Jeffrey Nordling and Iain Armitage. Joining them will be Douglas Smith (Big Love) and the one and only Meryl Streep as Kidman’s grieving mother-in-law, who is searching for answers.
The subversive, darkly comedic drama will explore the malignancy of lies, the durability of friendships, the fragility of marriage and, of course, the vicious ferocity of sound parenting. Relationships will fray, loyalties will erode, and the potential for emotional and bodily injury shall loom.
It was Witherspoon and Kidman who optioned the rights to Liane Moriarty’s bestselling novel via their respective production companies Hello Sunshine and Blossom Films. They serve as executive producers along with Bruna Papandrea, Blossom’s Per Saari, Gregg Fienberg, season one director Jean-Marc Vallée and his producing partner Nathan Ross, season two director Andrea Arnold, and series writer David E. Kelley, who will pen all seven scripts based on a story by Moriarty, who serves as producer.
Big Little Lies debuted on HBO in February 2017 and went on to receive 16 Emmy nominations, winning eight Emmys, including Outstanding Limited Series. Kidman, Dern and Alexander Skarsgård also won both Emmys and Golden Globes for their individual performances.
Like Lucas Hedges, Newton recently appeared in two Best Picture nominees — Lady Bird and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. And coincidentally, Newton and Hedges just wrapped the indie Ben Is Back with Julia Roberts and Courtney B. Vance. She’s represented by Innovative Artists, Management 360 and attorney Steve Warren.
Jeff Sneider | Editor in Chief