It’s been a long road for fans of Twin Peaks. Nearly twenty-five years after the series was abruptly cancelled at ABC, leaving viewers with one of the most frustrating (and confusing) cliff-hangers in TV history, Showtime agreed to produce a third season under the direction of creator David Lynch. However, months once the revival was announced, and fans began gearing up for a return to the town where everyone knows everyone and nothing is what it seems, the deal began to fall apart – and Lynch exited the show.
Showtime remained confident that they would move ahead without the series’ creator but, in spite of the network’s optimism, there has been zero news on the project since Lynch confirmed he was out – until today. In a surprise announcement, the filmmaker has confirmed that he’s reached a deal with Showtime and will direct every single episode of the 9-part limited series.
Lynch took to Twitter to give the update, the same place where he previously dropped news of his exit, and Showtime was quick to follow-up with their own tweets.
Check out Lynch’s message below – followed by a series of in-jokes and self-congratulations from Showtime:
Anyone familiar with TV development knows that creators, producers, writers, and showrunners come and go throughout a series’ run. Few television programs get the full attention of a Kurt Sutter (Sons of Anarchy) or Vince Gilligan (Breaking Bad), but there’s no question it’s hard to imagine a Twin Peaks revival without Lynch (and co-creator Mark Frost) behind the camera – or, at the very least, shaping the story. Add to that, Lynch and Frost’s involvement was key in securing a return of series star Kyle MacLachlan (Agents of SHIELD) when Showtime first began development.
At the time of Lynch’s prior departure, the actor remained relatively quiet on the matter (publicly), focusing his Twitter presence on Agents of SHIELD instead. Yet, now that Lynch and Frost are back on the team, with pre-production underway, MacLachlan was finally able to share his excitement:
Lynch’s abrupt departure caught the network by surprise back in April, with Showtime stating: “We were saddened to read David Lynch’s statement today since we believed we were working towards solutions with David and his reps on the few remaining deal points,” before holding out hope they’d still be able to lock the co-creators down, “Showtime also loves the world of Twin Peak’ and we continue to hold out hope that we can bring it back in all its glory with both of its extraordinary creators, David Lynch and Mark Frost, at its helm.”
Unsurprisingly, internet blowback blamed the cable network for ruining the deal – especially considering fans had never actually expected the series to return prior to Showtime’s announcement. Once the rug was pulled out from under them, fans blasted Showtime for even thinking about Twin Peaks season 3 without Lynch and Frost attached – placing heavy pressure on the network to reapproach the co-creators. After all, longtime viewers will recall this isn’t the first time that Lynch and Frost were pushed around by a network – given that many of the problems in Twin Peaks season 2 can be attributed to pressure from ABC executives who thought ratings would be higher if the showrunners revealed the identity of Laura Palmer’s killer.
Twin Peaks isn’t a well-known brand with a large chunk of modern pop culture awareness (unlike The X-Files), it’s a twenty-five year old cult series. Nevertheless, in an industry where cable programming is battling for viewers (against rival channels, free network TV, and streaming services), developing a library of high-quality exclusive content has become essential for gaining ground in a crowded field. For that reason, Twin Peaks might seem like an odd choice for Showtime to back – but, with relatively low cost to produce, a solid third season could earn the network a lot of goodwill (and, subsequently, new subscribers).
Lynch has kept mum regarding what fans can expect from season 3; though, after the Fire Walk with Me spinoff movie failed to give viewers closure, it’s likely that Lynch and Frost know they’ll need to do something special. At the very least, it sounds as though the co-creators will be able to provide an adequate end to the series (and answers to the season 2 cliffhanger) – assuming that Showtime doesn’t talk Lynch and Frost into a fourth season… with a damn fine cup of coffee.
Twin Peaks season 3 does not have a set premiere date yet but will air exclusively on Showtime.