The Handmaid’s Tale: Creators confirm date of sixth and final season

The release date of the upcoming sixth and final season of The Handmaid’s Tale has been revealed after months of delays.

The final season of the Emmy-winning dystopian series was initially slated to start production in 2023 for release this Autumn, but the schedule was delayed due to the SAG-AFTRA writers strike.

Hollywood writers agreed to end the longest strike in Hollywood’s history last September, after union leaders approved a contract agreement with studio bosses.

The final chapter of The Handmaid’s Tale will begin production this summer for premiere in 2025, according to Disney Television Group President Craig Erwich.

The sixth season was given the green light in September 2022, ahead of its season five premiere.

The hit drama series, starring Elisabeth Moss, is based on the novel by Margaret Atwood and set in a dystopian future plagued with infertility. Handmaids are assigned to have babies.

Speaking to Deadline, Erwich said: “The strike for sure paused everything, there’s no denying that. We didn’t know when production would resume and therefore didn’t have a complete line of sight into our schedule and couldn’t pick up certain shows until we knew that.”

“It’s always hard when there’s a work stoppage, it’s painful for everybody,” he added.

Erwich also revealed a new spin-off, The Testaments, is in development. Based on the Margaret Atwood novel of the same name, the new series follows on years after the events of Season 6.

Elisabeth Moss in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale' (Channel 4 / Hulu)
Elisabeth Moss in ‘The Handmaid’s Tale' (Channel 4 / Hulu)

In a press release ahead of the season 5, Bruce Miller, creator, showrunner and executive producer, said: "It has been a true honor to tell the story of Margaret Atwood's groundbreaking novel and chillingly relevant world, and we are thrilled to bring viewers a sixth and final season of The Handmaid's Tale.

"We are grateful to Hulu and MGM for allowing us to tell this story, which unfortunately has remained as relevant as ever throughout its run, and are in awe of our incredible fans for their unwavering support, and without whom we never would have gotten to this point."

Craig Erwich added: "Five years ago, almost to the day, The Handmaid's Tale made history when it became the first show to win an Emmy for a streaming service.

“In the time since, it has been a privilege and pleasure to work with some of the finest creative talent in our industry on this show – a distinct and exceptional group of people who continue to produce the highest quality television that has made and continues to make significant cultural impact.

“Bruce, Warren, Lizzie and the entire team at MGM have been amazing partners, and we hope fans enjoy these last two seasons."