Fargo TV series creator Noah Hawley confirms that he has an idea for season 4 of the acclaimed FX adaptation/continuation of the Coen brothers’ 1996 hit, but says time is definitely not on his side right now. Since season 3 ended, Hawley has been attached to a number of projects, including the second season of Legion, an adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle, a Doctor Doom film at 20th Century Fox, and the upcoming astronaut film Pale Blue Dot, starring Natalie Portman and Jon Hamm. Needless to say, with all that on the writer-director’s plate, getting the series to television by 2019 will be a challenge.
Still, the news likely comes as a welcome surprise for fans of the show, as the conclusion of season 3 was met with somewhat mixed reviews and Hawley himself was left unsure as to whether or not the series would even continue. FX president John Landgraf was initially a little more optimistic, saying there would be room for the series if and when Hawley was ready to move forward with a fourth season. And move forward it did, as Landgraff announced a new installment was in development at the TCA 2018 winter press tour.
In an interview with THR, Hawley shared that he has a better idea of what a new Fargo installment might look like, and though he didn’t share any specifics, he did say that, like season 2, it would be a period piece. Hawley said:
"I now have an idea that's less in the corner of my eye and more in front of me. I don't have a lot of time right now to focus on it. What I can say is that it will be another period piece.”
What period exactly Hawley is thinking about is unclear, but he did offer up a broad idea of what direction he’s leaning in terms of story, once again reiterating that he needs to find the time to sit down and write the thing.
"More and more as I think about telling stories in this vein and what the original film is about, these are really American stories and stories about the American landscape, and the things that people do for money. I feel like I have a very interesting and exciting direction to go in. I'm trying to find the time to get it down on paper.
I'm always interested in trying to expand the definition [of the series]. Fargo can be this, but can it also be this? The only reason to make another one is if you're going to do something different. We've made 30 hours of the show so far, and the last thing I ever want is for someone to say, 'You know, it's Fargo. They do their Fargo thing, and it's funny.' If you have this tone of voice and this ability to channel this Coen Brothers sensibility, you just don't want to repeat yourself, because they never do.”
Perhaps most interesting is Hawley’s statement that he doesn’t want to repeat himself with the next season, which might explain his decision to set it in a specific point in history. A common refrain with season 3 was that the story felt as though it was following too many of the same beats as the previous installments, and that although it delivered some great single episodes, by taking the story to unexpected locales, the season lacked the same sense of surprise or that anything could happen as was felt with season 2. With any luck, perhaps the promise of shifting gears and doing another period piece will see Fargo go for broke once again.