Starz announced Thursday, July 23 that “Da Vinci’s Demons” will end with Season 3. Variety reports that the third and final season will premiere on Saturday, Oct. 24 at 8/7 p.m. CT.
The series, created by David S. Goyer, revolves around a young and tormented Leonardo da Vinci (played by Tom Riley) in Renaissance-era Florence. Season 3 will focus on da Vinci as he witnesses his personal inventions being employed by Ottoman invaders during the battle of Otranto. To fight those who seek to destroy everything he loves, he must “align with old foes, repair broken friendships, discover hidden secrets, and resume a dangerous quest, all while knowing that he is his own worst enemy,” according to Entertainment Weekly. John Shiban (“Hell on Wheels”) will serve as the new showrunner, replacing Goyer.
The upcoming 10-episode third season, which wrapped production in Wales earlier this year, was picked up more than a year ago in March 2014. The new season will launch more than 17 months after the Season 2 finale. As Deadline notes, the cancellation means that Starz has yet to launch an original series that goes beyond a third season, though the successful “Spartacus” franchise sparked the prequel miniseries “Gods of the Arena,” in addition to its three prior seasons.
“While ending Leonardo’s journey is bittersweet for me, I’m happy we’re ending the story on a high note. Leonardo was famous for his mirror-writing, and there’s a symmetry to the entire series — between the first episode and the final one — that I think the maestro would have appreciated,” said Goyer. “I want to thank our dedicated fans around the world for viewing and engaging with such passion. I want to thank Starz for joining me on this crazy romp. And I want to thank Tom Riley for turning in a consistently brilliant performance. It’s no small feat to portray a genius, but Tom did it with grace and humor. I hope everyone enjoys these final episodes as much as we enjoyed making them.”
Starz managing director Carmi Zlotnik added: “The steadfast fans of ‘Da Vinci’s Demons’ have been asking about the next installment of this story, and we’re excited to roll it out. David Goyer brought us a plan to portray the unknown early years of a genius, and we think the fans will enjoy this final chapter which segues into the da Vinci that history knows. John Shiban has done a tremendous job of building on past seasons and by showing how da Vinci matures as his challenges grow.”
The cancellation comes as the premium cable network has seen success with its most recent Saturday night dramas “Power” and “Outlander,” which have both averaged around two million viewers and have been renewed for new seasons, along with British import “The Missing.” Upcoming series include “Ash vs. Evil Dead” starring Bruce Campbell reviving his character from the “Evil Dead” film franchise, and comedy “Blunt Talk,” which is led by Patrick Stewart .