The Orville Star Fuels Season 4 Speculation With Cryptic Post

Is J. Lee hinting at The Orville Season 4?

The Orville's future remains in limbo as there have been no official updates on the show's future in the months since it began streaming jointly on Disney + and Hulu. However, star J. Lee's cryptic social media posts are fueling speculation anew. On November 29th, Lee, who plays The Orville's chief engineer, John LaMarr, tweeted, "#LamarrLifts #TheOrville #Loading 😏🚀👨🏾‍🚀💫V." He attached an animated GIF of Kobe Bryant saying, "Job's not finished." When asked by a fan if his tweet means there will be a Season 4 of The Orville, Lee replied with another animated GIF, this one of a magician performing in front of a sign reading "magic number" and pulling the number "4" out of his hat. Not exactly clear messaging, but it's enough to grab The Orville fans' attention.

Lee's tweets came one day after the episode of Michael Rosenbaum's Inside of You podcast released an episode featuring Lee's The Orville co-star, Adrianne Palicki. In that interview, Palicki said of The Orville, "No, no longer doing that" and described some of the difficulties involved in shooting the series in greater detail.

Will The Orville Season 4 happen?

The Orville's creator/star, Seth MacFarlane, offered fans an encouraging update about Season 4 of the show in March, saying he was "cautiously optimistic" amid a turbulent time in the television industry. "The industry is in the midst of a time of upheaval and transition," MacFarlane tweeted. "I wish I could provide a definitive answer to your question.  At the moment, all I can say is that I remain… cautiously optimistic."

In August 2022, MacFarlane gave The Orville a 50/50 chance of renewal. He believed the new Disney+ viewership could tip the scales.

"My hope is, that when the show drops on Disney+, the people who haven't yet discovered [The Orville] will suddenly give it a chance," MacFarlane told TVLine. "That's a potential game changer for us. I think that creatively and audience-wise when people sit down and give the show a chance, it upends their expectations. The biggest burden with the show is preconceptions. People think it's one thing — there are people out there who think it's a sitcom —  and when they sit down to watch it they realize it's something completely different. Once you get people's eyeballs on it, the show does the work, it speaks for itself, and people tend to be hooked."

As for what The Orville's fourth season would look like, should the series get a renewal, MacFarlane called it a blank slate. "It's tough to chart exactly what a Season 4 would be, because when we started writing Season 3, half the stuff that happened — the shifting of the Alliances, the Kaylon becoming an ally, the Moclans becoming enemies — I never could have predicted. It's just something that came about in the writers' room over time. Certainly, we set up threads this year, and most were pretty obvious, that lend themselves to payoffs in a Season 4, but how everything intertwines and evolves and develops…. I don't even know if we're picked up!"

The Orville is streaming now on Hulu and Disney+.