The Cody crime family is returning to TNT for Animal Kingdom Season 5.
Animal Kingdom, a crime drama series with a dedicated fan base, debuted on TNT in June 2016 to positive critical reviews.
The series, developed by Jonathan Lisco, was based on David Michod’s 2010 film of the same name.
Animal Kingdom Season 4, starring Ellen Barkin, Shawn Hatosy, and Finn Cole, ended in August 2019 with Smurf’s shocking exit. The Cody family matriarch was gunned down by her grandson J (Finn Cole).
If you’ve been wondering whether Animal Kingdom is returning for Season 5, following is everything we know so far, including release date, cast updates, and plot.
Is there going to be a Season 5 of Animal Kingdom?
Yes, there is going to be Animal Kingdom Season 5.
Shawn Hatosy, who plays Andrew Cody (aka Pope) in the series, confirmed that Animal Kingdom will come back for Season 5. On July 24, Hatosy provided the news via a post on his Twitter page.
“Animal Kingdom has been renewed for season 5! To all our fans: the Cody family thanks you for your loyalty. Let’s eat some pie.”
On July 25, the official Animal Kingdom Twitter handle also confirmed that the series will return for Season 5.
— Animal Kingdom (@AnimalKingdom) July 25, 2019
Release date latest: When is Animal Kingdom Season 5 likely to come out?
All previous seasons of Animal Kingdom premiered in May/June during consecutive years. Season 1 premiered in June 2016, while Seasons 2, 3, and 4 premiered in May of 2017, 2018, and 2019 respectively.
Fans had therefore expected that Animal Kingdom Season 5 would premiere on TNT in May/June 2020. However, production on the upcoming season was delayed earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Production on Season 5 started in January but was shut down in March due to the COVID-19.
In March of 2020, TNT announced that production for Season 5 was being suspended due to the pandemic.
Filming has not resumed since March and TNT has given no word yet regarding when production will resume. The uncertainty due to the coronavirus pandemic makes it difficult to predict a filming schedule as well as when the new season will likely premiere.
So, while the good news is that Animal Kingdom has been renewed for Season 5, the bad news is that fans may have to wait for quite a while before the crime drama series returns to our TV screens.
We can only hope that filming will resume in late 2020 or early 2021 for a May/June 2021 release date.
Monsters & Critics will keep you updated regarding the latest Animal Kingdom Season 5 release date news, so stay tuned.
Animal Kingdom Season 5 cast updates
Fans can expect most of the main cast to reprise their roles in Season 5.
This includes Shawn Hatosy as Pope, Rigo Sanchez as Manny, Ben Robson as Craig, Jake Weary as Deran, and Finn Cole as Joshua Cody (aka J).
Although Ellen Barkin’s character, Janine Cody (aka Smurf), was killed in Season 2, the actress is expected to reprise her role as Smurf in flashback scenes.
Fans are also hoping that Billy Cody, Dennis Leary’s character from Season 3, will play a more prominent role in the upcoming season.
The series sprung a surprise on fans when Billy, Deran’s absentee father, returned for the Season 4 finale.
What is Animal Kingdom about?
Animal Kingdom Season 1 followed the story of 17-year-old Joshua “J” Cody (Finn Cole). He moved in with his grandmother and her family after his drug-addicted mom died of a heroin overdose.
J soon discovered that the Codys were a criminal family ruled by his grandmother, Janine Cody, aka Smurf and portrayed by Ellen Barkin.
J quickly gets deeply involved in the criminal underworld alongside cousins Pope, Craig, Deran, and Baz (Scott Speedman).
Animal Kingdom Season 5 plot
Animal Kingdom Season 4 ended with Smurf’s shocking death. After she was diagnosed with terminal cancer she planned her last major heist. During the operation she provoked a gunfight, hoping to get killed, but Pope saved her life.
She then handed Pope a gun and told him to shoot her. She threatened to shoot Pope if he refused. In the end, J stepped in and gunned her down.
Executive producer John Wells revealed in a chat with Deadline that Smurf’s past will continue to influence the lives of her children in the upcoming season.
“I think the biggest opportunity and challenge rolled into one is finding a way to showcase the depth and importance of Smurf’s role in the Cody family psychologically. Next season, the writers will get a chance to explore how our characters were formed by Smurf and how those twisted connections continue to affect them after she’s gone. There is a lot to unpack there.”
Animal Kingdom Season 5 is expected to continue where Season 4 left off with flashback scenes revealing Smurf’s backstory, including how she built her criminal career and how she raised a family of criminals.