'The Handmaid's Tale' Renewed for Sixth and Final Season Ahead of Season 5 Premiere

Season 5 of The Handmaid's Tale premieres Sept. 14 on Hulu, and will be the penultimate season of the hit drama series


The Handmaid's Tale is coming to an end.

Ahead of the season 5 premiere of the award-winning show, Hulu has announced that the show has been renewed for a sixth season — but the season will also be its last.

"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," Bruce Miller, creator, showrunner and executive producer, said in a press release. "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."

Added Craig Erwich, President, ABC Entertainment, Hulu & Disney Branded Television Streaming Originals: "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."

The hit drama series, starring Elisabeth Moss, is based on the novel by Margaret Atwood and set in a future world plagued with infertility that assigns handmaids to have babies. It premiered on Hulu in April 2017 and has since produced four seasons.

elisabeth moss, Yvonne Strahovski
Elisabeth Moss and O-T Fagbenle in The Handmaid's Tale season 5 (2022). Hulu

Throughout its run, the series made history as the first streaming show to win a Best Drama Series Emmy. It has since won 14 Emmy Awards — including three outstanding lead actress in a drama series trophies for Moss, 39 — as well as a Peabody Award.

Fellow stars Ann Dowd, Bradley Whitford, Samira Wiley and Alexis Bledel have also all won Emmys for their performances in the show.

In total, The Handmaid's Tale has been nominated for 75 Emmy Awards and six Golden Globe Awards.

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Besides the awards, The Handmaid's Tale has garnered much attention due to the dystopian tale's themes — namely, a woman's right to free will and bodily autonomy — as they find relevance in present day. The topic became especially relevant in the wake of the Supreme Court's June decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Atwood, now 82, previously told PEOPLE that she never intended for the the book to be prophetic.

"There's a precedent in real life for everything in the book," she said in 2017. "I decided not to put anything in that somebody somewhere hadn't already done. But you write these books so they won't come true."

The Handmaid's Tale. George Kraychyk/Hulu

News of the show's conclusion comes four months after Bledel, 40, announced she would not be appearing in the upcoming fifth season.

"After much thought, I felt I had to step away from The Handmaid's Tale at this time," Bledel said in a statement to Variety in May.

"I am forever grateful to Bruce Miller for writing such truthful and resonant scenes for Emily, and to Hulu, MGM, the cast and crew for their support," she added.

It also comes a little over two weeks after Hulu released the action-packed trailer for season 5. The fifth season will feature Moss, Whitford, Dowd, Wiley, Yvonne Strahovski, Max Minghella, O-T Fagbenle, Madeline Brewer, Amanda Brugel and Sam Jaeger.

Season 5 of The Handmaid's Tale premieres Sept. 14 on Hulu.

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