After almost seven years, The Last Kingdom has come to an end with Season 5…sort of.
The highly anticipated fifth and final season dropped on Netflix on Wednesday, March 9, and many fans of the historical drama have binged their way through the show already.
For those who don’t want the story of Uhtred of Bebbanburg (played by Alexander Dreymon) to be officially over, there is some very good news. Uhtred will live on, but in an exciting new format.
The Last Kingdom will continue after the show’s cancelation.
How The Last Kingdom Will Continue
In October 2021, The Last Kingdom fans were dealt some bittersweet news.
On one hand, The Last Kingdom would be back for a fifth and final season, but sadly it would be the last installment in the Netflix series.
On the other, Uhtred of Bebbanburg star Alexander Dreymon announced in October 2021 that The Last Kingdom would return in the form of a feature-length film, titled Seven Kings Must Die.
In even better news, production is currently underway in Hungary,Dreymon confirmed via Instagram in late January.
At the end of The Last Kingdom Season 5, Uhtred, Athelstan (Harry Gilby) and the forces of Mercia and Wessex defeated Constantine II, the King of Scotland, and his army.
As part of their victory, Uhtred made a deal with Constantine to ensure Northumbria would remain a “buffer zone” between England and Scotland until a new English King had been appointed, paving the way for Athelstan to become the first King of England.
The Last Kingdom movie, Seven Kings Must Die, will be a standalone story, executive producer Nigel Marchant has confirmed.
Speaking to The Radio Times, Marchant explained: “In terms of Season 5, we felt these two central strands of the story were coming together and it was the natural point to finish the TV series. Over the five seasons, there was a very definite beginning, middle, and end, so it was a group decision that we came to.
“However, we did know there were a few more books (not to spoil anything!) following on from where we get to at the end of Season 5. So we did start to talk to Netflix fairly early about whether we could tell that end piece of the jigsaw so that it would feel complete.”
He continued: “And it was felt that the movie version was the right format to do that. Season 5 does feel like the end of the TV series, and the movie will be much more standalone. It’ll be an extra treat for the fans of the TV series, but you could also watch it even if you’ve never seen the TV show.”
The plan was always for The Last Kingdom to end after five seasons. The series is based on The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell, adapting two books per season.
At the time The Last Kingdom made it to the small screen, Cornwell had written 10 books in total, therefore the last season would be based on books nine and 10: Warriors of the Storm and The Flame Bearer respectively.
Dreymon explained at MCM London Comic Con: “When we started shooting the show, there were 10 books that Bernard Cornwell had written and we had structured the show in away that Season 5 was always going to be the last season.”
However, since the show’s premiere in 2015, Cornwell has written a further three books: War of the Wolf, Sword of Kings and War Lord, which will serve as the inspiration for The Last Kingdom movie, Seven Kings Must Die.
Fans of the original novels may know a little of what to expect in Seven Kings Must Die. For example, in War of the Wolf, Uhtred returns to his childhood home of Bebbanburg and in Sword of Kings, Uhtred finds himself at the center of a succession struggle between Wessex and Mercia. In the third and final novel, War Lord, Uhtred meets Alfred the Great.
Star Set to Return
At the moment, the cast of Seven Kings Must Die has been kept under wraps to avoid spoilers, but Dreymon has been confirmed to return, as well as Arnas Fedaravičius as Uhtred’s loyal ally Sihtric.
Sadly, some fan favorites are unlikely to appear in the movie, including Brida (Emily Cox), Aethelflaed (Millie Brady), Osferth (Ewan Mitchell), and Sigtryggr (Eysteinn Sigurðarson). Unfortunately, they all met a brutal death in the final outing of The Last Kingdom.
For now, Seven Kings Must Die doesn’t have a release date, but with filming underway, fans can probably expect a late 2022 or early 2023 release date.
In the meantime, all five seasons of The Last Kingdom are streaming on Netflix.
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