It’s official: Netflix’s Manifest will return for a fourth season. The announcement was made at 8.28 a.m. on August 28, 2021, a homage to the series’ pivotal Flight 828, a plane that returns to Jamaica with its passengers five years after flying off. Almost the whole ensemble, including Josh Dallas and Melissa Roxburgh, will return for the final season of the show (or two).
The renewal of Manifest in August 2021 constituted a remarkable 180-degree turn for Netflix, which had first declined to renew the series, as did the show’s originator NBC—but both were compelled to rethink when Manifest’s entry to Netflix shattered U.S. streaming records.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, creator Jeff Rake remarked, “There is something extremely ironic about the show’s death and rebirth, given that that is the premise of the series itself.” He’s talking about the show’s titular “manifest” of characters, who were all thought to be dead for years when their plane landed in New York City.
The show follows Dallas and Roxburgh, a brother and sister combination who are trying to put the pieces together and figure out what happened to them.
Manifest was renewed by Netflix two months after the first and second seasons of the NBC show were picked up by the streaming service. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the show was seen by 25 million Netflix accounts in the United States and Canada in its first month.
Manifest continued to dominate Netflix’s statistics even after it dropped out of the top spot: In August of 2021, Nielson revealed that Manifest had surpassed its streaming-ratings records for six weeks in a row, averaging more over a billion views per week.
By September, Manifest had become only the third show in Netflix history to spend 100 days in the Top 10—ever.
When Will the Fourth Season of Manifest Be Released?
Probably in the winter of 2022. Matt Long, who plays Zeke, responded to a fan on Twitter by saying that the fourth season of Manifest would most likely not premiere until the “fall/winter” of 2022. Meanwhile, in response to Stephen King’s question on the return of Manifest, creator Rake wrote, “I’m hearing November.”
TV Line posted a photo of the fourth season’s opening script:
But remember how Rake said there would be a “batch” of fresh episodes instead than a whole season? There’s a rationale for his phrasing: the show’s 20 episodes will most likely not all premiere at the same time. As a result, Manifest might release eight episodes in the next “batch” and 12 in the next “batch”—likely presented as Season Four, Part One and Season Four, Part Two, Lucifer-style.
“Due to be released in many sections (of a quantity and frequency TBD! ), the supernatural drama’s farewell flight is on track to take off “late this year,” according to TV Line in March.
What Could Happen in Season 4 of Manifest?
Quite a bit, to be honest. To attain a satisfying finish, creator Rake will have to cram his three planned seasons’ worth of plot into those 20 episodes. “The endgame won’t change at all,” he remarked in an interview with EW. I am convinced that 20 episodes will provide me with adequate time to present the complete story as I wanted.”
“Things are going to be a little….different,” Josh Dallas, who plays Ben, wrote on Twitter alongside a snap of his new beard. Which makes sense, given that his character has recently suffered a…major setback. (WARNING: SPOILERS!) “Love the beard, but my heart is bleeding for Ben,” one admirer remarked, and Dallas responded, “To be honest… he’s not in a great position.”
Rake commented on what else to expect from Ben in season four after the events of the season three finale in an interview with TV Insider. “For Ben, Season 4 of Manifest is all about processing, digesting, and coming to grips with such a terrible loss, and then attempting to find a way to seek vengeance, to justify the act in terms of finding some meaning out of it.” “Brace yourselves,” he captioned an on-set photo of a funeral he posted on Twitter.
Who’s in the Fourth Season of Manifest’s Cast?
The cast was no longer contractually tied to the show beyond June 2021, according to Andreeva. Except for the character who died at the conclusion of season three and the character who…unexpectedly matured (no spoilers! ), the majority of the actors signed on in September after the renewal.
Daryl Edwards, who plays Vance, has also been promoted to series regular.
Meanwhile, the older actor who appeared at the end of season three is filling in for the role who abruptly aged. It’s a shame, because the two actors who aren’t returning were crucial to the success of the first three seasons of Manifest—and, according to Andreeva, the remaining cast will receive “significant pay rises” for the fourth season.
According to What’s on Netflix, the fourth season will introduce a few new characters, but just minor ones. Kyle Boyd, who was a passenger on Flight 828 with the important characters we know and love, as well as two new characters named Tela and June, will be introduced.
The official Manifest account tweeted a snapshot of Matt Long, who plays Zeke, on set with Roxburgh as a Valentine’s Day treat:
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What Happened After the Cancellation of Manifest?
Both NBC and Netflix had declined to renew Manifest by the time it became popular in the summer of 2021. However, the show and its rabid fans persisted, with millions of minutes watched on Netflix each week.
“Before we even had a chance to figure out if we needed a PR campaign to help save us,” Rake told The Hollywood Reporter, “the fans stood up and developed this campaign and spread the word—which was extremely fulfilling and heartening.”
Others began to notice soon after. “Do you hear me, Netflix, Hulu, or any other powers that be?” MAKE IT HAPPEN,” BuzzFeed’s Lauren Yapalater wrote. “Why would Netflix pass up saving a show with a visibly devoted fanbase?” Forbes’ Paul Tassi wondered.
A petition to bring Manifest back received over 100,000 signatures. Kourtney Kardashian and Demi Lovato, for example, have said that they’ve been binge-watching the show since it debuted on Netflix. Stephen King joined in the fun, tweeting “#SaveManifest.”
But probably the biggest shout came from Netflix’s Top 10, a list of the most popular shows on the streaming service, where Manifest remained at the top for months after it was cancelled. “Those top-secret numbers established by viewers bingeing the show’s first two seasons were what scored Manifest a critical fourth and final season,” the Hollywood Reporter said.
Netflix chose to pursue the project aggressively and ultimately beat bid NBC, according to Matthew Belloni’s “What I’m Hearing” email. “It soon became evident that transferring the show over to Netflix and starting and concluding with the legions of new fans that had grown in the Netflix ecosystem was just a more compelling case to be made,” Rake told THR.