It was touch-and-go for a while with the Zak Penn-helmed production. After the fallout of Spectrum Originals moving out of all original programming and AMC scaling back its own originals, it looked like the series adapted from another Hugh Howey book was going to be in release hell.
Fortunately, we got to see Lena Headey and Stephan James bring this lonely space drama to life under the MGM+ banner. Despite finding its sea legs about halfway into the season and garnering mixed buzz from audiences and critics (mostly for the timeline confusion and the uneven world-building), Beacon 23 delivered its last three episodes with sci-fi panache.
Credit for the praise was mostly due to its lead stars. Headey ably brought to life an angsty and jaded Aster Calyx, developing into someone who regained a sense of wonder and independence from the government she once worked for and believed in.
Beacon 23 has officially been renewed for season 2!
James walked down the naïve and often bumbling savage deserter Halan from his PTSD fugue with steady steps, into someone with a sense of mission and trust in people. While MGM+ would have had a final say on confirmation of the renewal, trust in the series must have also come from the blessing of the series’ former owners, AMC and Spectrum.
Those studios had already ordered a second season while season 1 was still wrapping up its production back in 2020. Still, its new studio stepping up for a renewal of another season is a good sign that executives, like MGM+ head honcho Michael Wright, are pleased.
Fingers crossed they will continue to pour in funding for the galactic dystopian series. "[We’re] excited for fans to continue this journey into Beacon 23’s universe of suspense, emotion, and unforeseen twists,” said Wright in the Deadline report.
Will Headey as Aster and James as Halan continue as character leads in season 2? Nothing has been confirmed in that area, but the additional cast that’s confirmed to be appearing are The Last of Us Natasha Mumba and Ellen Wong, whom we last saw in GLOW.
Glen Mazzara and Joy Blake have also been confirmed as showrunners according to the Deadline report.
Season 1 of Beacon 23 is now streaming on MGM+.