Homecoming season 2: Julia Roberts won’t return in leading role

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Work is underway on season 2 of Amazon’s based-on-a-podcast drama, Homecoming, but reports claim that the show’s star Julia Roberts won’t be returning to her leading role if and when the show returns.

The Hollywood Reporter broke the news, stating that Roberts will stay on board as an executive producer but will no longer lead the show’s on-screen ensemble. Her commitment to show as a leading actor, apparently, only over pertained to Homecoming‘s debut season. She won’t take a starring role in season 2, then, although THR notes that she could feasibly “pop in” for smaller appearances.

It’s unclear whether there will be any other personnel changes among the cast, but one thing we do have is a statement about season 2 from showrunner Sam Esmail. Here’s what he had to say about the development of Homecoming season 2, and what the show’s relationship to its source material podcast will look like going forward:

“We’ve deviated from very much of the podcast, so [season two of] the podcast doesn’t really have anything to do with the way the show is going. We’re working on a second season, but we have a very different trajectory for our show. I think when I signed on, I had only listened to the first six episodes of the podcast, which is the first season, and then from there we deviated completely. The show starts out fairly close to the podcast, and in the back half of the season we really start to see the major shifts and differences from the podcast.”

Major shifts from the podcast and no more starring role for the show’s biggest name actor? This is starting to sound like Esmail is cooking up something very different for the show’s continuation. Here’s hoping it works out well and the fans go with it.

We’ll keep you posted as we hear more about Homecoming season 2.