Season 2 of The Orville debuted on December 30, 2018, on Fox and concluded on April 25, 2019. The season continued the adventures of the USS Orville: meeting new aliens, facing old adversaries and encountering new ones, and revisiting the planet Moclus.This is the year of surprise for The Orville.— Scott Grimes, on Season 2
The season's heavy emphasis on drama and action was a marked departure from Season 1's lighthearted storytelling and frequent use of allegory; and, after Season 2 ended, creator Seth MacFarlane said that he had secretly wanted to take The Orville in that direction since the show began.
The Orville was renewed for a second season in November of 2017. Unlike Season 1, which aired in the fall, Season 2 aired mid-season over the winter and early spring.
By the middle of Season 1, expectations were high, but not certain, that the show would be renewed. "They were talking about a second season by the end of filming the first," author Jeff Bond later said. The Orville had posted respectable ratings for the Thursday 9 p.m. broadcasting slot, Fox's highest since 2015. Bond, who had had unique access to the show during its first season production, observed:
They didn't have any idea how the show was going to be received.... Initially it got very poor reviews based on the pilot, and it ended up doing very well in the ratings because of [Sunday night] football. They moved it to Thursday nights and there was a sense of disaster because ratings went down, but then they went back up... and outperformed what people thought it would do.Helping The Orville's case, the state of California approved the show for $14.5 million in tax breaks for a second season. On the other hand, The Orville ran high production costs. Each episode cost roughly $7 million to produce, more expensive than most of its competition, and the network had declined to order 13 more episodes for the Spring of 2018.
On November 2, 2017, Fox announced that it had renewed the show for a second season, four days after Majority Rule aired, the second most-watched episode of the show overall. Renewal came early in the year for The Orville, beating all Fox shows but The Simpsons. Some journalists were surprised that Fox chose to renew the series instead of ordering more episodes for the first season, but creator Seth MacFarlane had long said that he did not want a second half of the first season in order to keep the show's production values high. The budget was increased for Season 2, but the exact amount is unknown.
Trailers EditFox released a three-minute Season 2 trailer on July 21, 2018 at that year's San Diego Comic-Con.The trailer's serious tone was a remarkable departure from the 2017 May trailer, which portrayed the show as comedy-driven. Creator Seth MacFarlane was delighted: "I think the trailer that Fox has put together this year is awesome. They've knocked it out of the park. They've really captured the balance [of comedy and drama] perfectly. I think it's much more representational of what the show is than last year's."
On October 27, a second trailer aired during commercials for the 2018 baseball World Series, a mix of new material and old footage revealed in the first trailer. On October 29, Fox released a third trailer. On December 20 and 21, Fox released "preview" videos entitled Preview: Welcome To The Galaxy and Preview: There's Nothing Like It.
2018-19 schedule Edit
Season 2 began on December 30, 2018, a Sunday night, on a midseason schedule, and after the premiere episode, the show reverted to its old Thursday night time slot. Fox did not specify why it unexpectedly bumped the show to a midseason schedule although the studio did mention that the show would begin exactly after the conclusion of Thursday Night Football - a newly purchased property that had occupied The Orville's old Thursday night time slot during the fall.
Michael Cecchini, a journalist for Den of Geek who attended the Fox Upfronts, mollified fans not to be "fooled" by Fox moving The Orville to midseason, reporting that network leadership said the show is a "huge priority." Within the studio, the extension came as a "huge relief" to the crew, according to visual effects producer Brooke Noska, as the team had much more time to complete post-production.
Episode count EditGoing into Season 2, creator Seth MacFarlane wanted a low number of episodes to maintain the high quality of the show: "I'd rather do fewer episodes and have them be better content-wise than do 22 and have them be filler."
The second season includes the missing episode Primal Urges. The first season had 13 episodes but the twelfth was moved to the second season, meaning that the second season would have at least 14 new episodes in addition to one already-produced episode.
Whether the season would have 15 total episodes was at one point an open question. Originally, Fox purchased 13 new episodes. According to executive producers David A. Goodman and Brannon Braga and director Jon Cassar in a July 2018 table interview, Fox purchased an additional episode to bring the total to 15. While there is no clear answer to the producers' comment, the final number of episodes was 14.
Production EditAs production began, the crew was understandably nervous for the success of the show. "It’s scary going into a brand-new season," MacFarlane said. "Because you’ve just written an entire batch of episodes, presumably that you are proud of and that you feel good about, and then you have to do it all over again. In the back of your head, there’s always the scary thought, ‘Oh, s—t. We used up all the stories, and there are no more.’"
The cast and crew had their first joint meeting for the upcoming season on January 28.
According to executive producer David A. Goodman, several important writing changes occurred between Season 1 and 2:
- At MacFarlane's suggestion, when the writing team met for Season 2, they decided to pen more dramatic, less comedic scripts.
- Plot lines and character arcs would be more continuous from episode to episode.
- Great attention would be paid to the lore of The Orville by fleshing out the "nuts and bolts" about locations and species.
Other early writing decisions included giving Gordon Malloy more screen time by making him desire companionship, fostering a familial relationship between Claire Finn, her children, and Isaac for the first half of the season, and having Ed Mercer and Kelly Grayson date other people.
Some episodes came from Season 1. During writing production for Season 1 in 2016 through 2017, MacFarlane and the writing team completed 16 scripts, 13 of which were used in the first season and three set aside if the show was renewed (two of which were the scripts for Identity, Pt. 1 and Identity, Pt. 2).
Changes to the cast, Halston Sage departs, Jessica Szohr joins EditSeveral major changes to the cast occurred, the most infamous being the departure of actress Halston Sage (Alara) to star in a Netflix movie. Actress Jessica Szohr replaced Sage, playing Talla Keyali.
Two new regularly recurring actors were added, Chris Johnson (Cassius) and Michaela McManus (Janel Tyler). The characters were promoted as creating a "rift" between Ed and Kelly, and forcing the commanders to deal with separate relational problems.
Changes to the crew Edit
Tami Lane replaced Howard Berger as head of the make-up department. Co-executive producer Wellesley Wild, author of the episode Primal Urges, left The Orville to create a reboot of the show Animaniacs. Shonnard Hedges left the editing team, reducing the number of editors to two.
Changes to sets EditDesign and construction teams led by production designer Stephen J. Lineweaver and art director Robert Strohmaier built an armory for the ship, more ship hallways, and a classroom. New decals were added to the exteriors of Union shuttles.
After filming of the sixth episode concluded on May 11, the cast and crew took a several weeks-long break. The purpose of the break was to give the effects team time to edit the shot footage while others could prepare for the next five episodes, followed by another break for the remaining episodes. Season 1 had no breaks, and the effects team found themselves pressed against time to finish editing. A second break took place at the end of July.
Post-filming EditAs they had done in Season 1, the cast and crew celebrated with a wrap party on October 13. This time, the party was held at The Highlight Room in Los Angeles, California, which featured a disc jockey, MacFarlane singing "Fly Me to the Moon," and a novelty portrait room that made a three-dimensional photograph of people with the Orville. MacFarlane gifted members of the production crew with personalized "Orville" bottles of Tennessee bourbon or embroidered throw pillows. Editors showed outtake montages of the cast. (The Planetary Union Network published a video of the montages several days after Season 2 concluded.)
After the final day of shooting, the footage entered post-production and the main cast returned to their daily lives. "It feels so surreal. It's been a wonderful journey," Penny Johnson Jerald (Claire Finn) told her fans. "I can't wait for you guys to see what we have in store."
The second season represents a significant increase over the first in the amount of edited footage. The first season represented over 4,000 visual effects shots, and the second is expected to double that number.Towards the end of [the season] the scripts get more ambitious. They'll be fun to watch; they'll be Hell to make. New species. Lots of eye candy. Lots of layered storytelling.— Tom Costantino
Visual effects vendor Pixomondo joined the retinue of effects companies working on The Orville for Season 2.
Transition to JAZ Pods Edit
Throughout 2018, Fox explored the idea to reduce the number of commercials during television programs by 40 percent. By early June, the proposal caught MacFarlane's attention, who wanted more air time per episode of The Orville. Meanwhile, Fox wanted "to give the show more content and respect to Seth's creativity." The two entered talks to test "JAZ Pod" commercials, an industry name for one-minute commercials that would split the episode into more breaks but greatly increase the amount of episode time from 43:45 to 48:10.
By early August, MacFarlane and Fox agreed to use the JAZ Pod format for Season 2. Editor Scott Powell reported that the switch adds five minutes more air time per episode. MacFarlane was elated: "We're part of this new, experimental program that creates a different balance between ad time and programming time, ... [which] allows you to let things breathe in a way that streaming shows are able to do. … That’s been a big boon for our storytelling process."
All of the composers of Season 1 returned, though the transition to JAZ Pods gave the show five more minutes to develop the music of each episode. "We structured the commercials differently, so we suddenly had all this extra time to play with," MacFarlane recalled. "All of that went into shoeleather where it's not dialogue, it's not story; it's imagery that lets you take a breath and take in the set, the visual effects work, and the music."
Preparing to air Edit
On January 4, TVGuide reported that the show would not air in 2018. The bit of misreporting earned the attention of even the showrunner, MacFarlane, who published a correction via Twitter that show would air later in the year as originally planned. A finalized premiere date was announced in mid-May that The Orville would return on December 30.
After shooting concluded in late November, the actors and workers behind the show returned to interview. Perhaps the most notable appearance was by MacFarlane on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on December 18 where a new clip from the next season aired for the first time. "We go deep this season," Jerald promised. "We hit on some issues that people are afraid to touch."
From a production standpoint, inadvertently leaked information sparked a change in policy while filming. In an interview with the Planetary Union Network, editor Tom Costantino said a "very gentle hammer" came down on the crew who posted pictures to their social network. Unlike Season 1, in which the show operated in relative obscurity, "now there's at least a couple people checking our [social network] feeds. ... Now we have to be careful."The risk of divulging spoilers became a frequent topic of conversation by the cast in interviews. As actor Scott Grimes explained, "[W]e’ve had some people on the show tweet some things and they get a call from Fox immediately – or Seth. Well, Seth probably calls Fox and says, ‘Call this son of a b****.’"
PaleyFest and the Television Academy sneak-peak Edit
The first major public appearance by the crew was March 17, when the main cast, Coleman, Braga, Goodman, and Clark returned to PaleyFest for a panel discussion of the show. The panel reflected over Season 1 and teased the crowd with snippets of Season 2 information.
That same day, Fox quietly hosted a sneak-peak look at Season 2 production for members of the Television Academy. Little is known of that event but some details have since surfaced through promotional items.
2018 San Diego Comic-Con Edit
The cast and crew returned to the San Diego Comic-Con on July 21, exuding a new confidence in the show that was not there in 2017. The hosted a panel question-and-answer session, signings, live-streamed interviews, giveaways of merchandise and props from the show, and a Season 2 trailer reveal. Show props given away include a PM-44, a latchkum, a Union comscanner, and several skulls signed by the main cast.
Cancelled 2018 New York Comic-Con Edit
While the cast had long been scheduled to return to New York's Comic-Con in early October (they had attended in 2017), the host unexpectedly announced on September 28 that the show would not make an appearance and the panel was cancelled. New York Comic-Con cited only to a "scheduling conflict," much to the dismay of fans. Editor and associate producer Tom Costantino clarified that the cast and crew needed to shoot, and could not afford to push filming back any later.
Season premiere EditDays before the release of Ja'loja, the crew expressed their jitters. "We spend an entire year working on this,” MacFarlane confessed. “You get anxious to get some feedback, because you’re really working in a vacuum up to that point... We always joke on the set that it’s an impossible show to complete on a network schedule and budget, yet somehow, we do it. We’ll be in post-production right up to the wire, trying to get all the stuff done."
- When second-unit filming is included, filming took exactly one year, lasting from February 26, 2018, until February 26, 2019.
- In January 2019, Scott Grimes and Adrianne Palicki announced their engagement. 
List of episodes Edit
|013||02||01||S02E01||1LAB14||Ja'loja||Dec. 30, 2018||1.52/5.683||Season 2 premiere.|
|As the Orville heads towards Moclus for Bortus’ special once-a-year ceremony, Ed discovers Kelly has moved on and has started dating. Meanwhile, Gordon asks for John’s help in getting game, and Claire turns to Isaac for parenting advice.|
|014||02||02||S02E02; S01E12 (former)||1LAB12||Primal Urges||Jan. 3, 2019||0.63/2.821||Return to Thursday night schedule. Twelfth series production episode. Originally Season 1, Episode 12.|
|Ed and the crew race to save a small group of survivors on a planet about to be destroyed by its sun, while Bortus and Klyden start marriage counseling after Bortus’s obsession with the ship’s Environmental Simulator gets out of hand.|
|015||02||03||S02E03||1LAB15||Home||Jan. 10, 2019||0.74/3.063||Departure of Alara Kitan (Halston Sage).|
|Ed, Gordon, and Alara visit Alara's home planet of Xelaya.|
|016||02||04||S02E04||1LAB16||Nothing Left on Earth Excepting Fishes||Jan. 17, 2019||0.73/3.012|
|Ed finds himself behind enemy lines when he crash-lands on a mysterious planet. Meanwhile, Kelly questions why Gordon wants to take the Command Test.|
|017||02||05||S02E05||1LAB17||All the World is Birthday Cake||Jan. 24, 2019||0.74/3.176||Introduction of Talla Keyali (Jessica Szohr).|
|The Orville makes first contact and a new crewmember joins the ship.|
|018||02||06||S02E06||1LAB18||A Happy Refrain||Jan. 31, 2019||0.68/3.105|
|The Orville crew is surprised when Claire's personal life takes an unexpected turn, and Gordon makes an unusual grooming suggestion to Bortus.|
|019||02||07||S02E07||1LAB19||Deflectors||Feb. 14, 2019||0.7/3.065|
|A renowned engineer joins the Orville, but he hides a shameful secret. Meanwhile, Kelly breaks up with Cassius.|
|020||02||08||S02E08||1LAB20||Identity, Pt. 1||Feb. 21, 2019||0.75/3.05|
|After Isaac suddenly shuts down, the crew journeys to his home world of Kaylon 1.|
|021||02||09||S02E09||1LAB21||Identity, Pt. 2||Feb. 28, 2019||0.78/3.151|
|The captured Orville leads the Kaylon armada on its way to Earth for a battle to destroy all biological life.|
|022||02||10||S02E10||1LAB22||Blood of Patriots||March 7, 2019||0.63/2.935|
|Ed must initiate peace talks with the Krill but two unexpected guests risk everything.|
|023||02||11||S02E11||1LAB23||Lasting Impressions||March 21, 2019||0.64/2.939|
|The crew of the Orville opens a time capsule from the year 2015, and Gordon finds love in an unexpected place. Meanwhile, Bortus and Klyden take up smoking.|
|024||02||12||S02E12||1LAB24||Sanctuary||April 11, 2019||-|
|When two Moclans board the Orville, they bring a secret that threatens the Planetary Union.|
|025||02||13||S02E13||1LAB25||Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow||April 18, 2019||-|
|A time distortion brings someone from the past to the Orville.|
|026||02||14||S02E14||1LAB26||The Road Not Taken||April 25, 2019||-|
|The crew must contend with the disastrous fallout from Kelly's decision.|
See also Edit
- ↑ []
- ↑ "Seth MacFarlane - 'The Orville'". THR Awards Chatter. April 25, 2019.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Alvarez, Chris. "Sci-fi television - The World of The Orville - Jeff Bond interview - AAD 88". YouTube. Dec. 20, 2018.
- ↑ Andreeva, Nellie & Dominic Patten. "‘The Orville’ & ‘Good Trouble’ Eye Renewals After Landing Tax Incentives For Future Seasons". Deadline. Dec. 10, 2018.
- ↑ "SDCC2017 The Orville, EP's David. A Goodman, Jason Clark, & Brannon Braga Interview". FanboyNation. July 25, 2017.
- ↑ Andreeva, Nellie. "‘The Orville’ Renewed For Season 2 By Fox". Deadline. Nov. 2, 2017.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Keveney, Bill. "Seth MacFarlane on 'The Orville' return, Carrie Fisher and the 'destructive' Fox News". USA Today. Dec. 26, 2018.
- ↑ Tim Surette. "The Orville's Season Will be Cut Short". TVGuide. Nov. 14, 2017. Online. http://www.tvguide.com/news/the-orville-season-1-episode-count/
- ↑ CineMovie. "Seth MacFarlane Talks The Orville & Ed and Kelly's Future Romance". YouTube. Aug. 1, 2018.
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Andreeva, Nellie. "Fox Fall 2018-19 Schedule: Multi-Camera Comedy Block On Friday, ‘9-1-1’ Moves To Monday, ‘The Orville’ Returns In December". Deadline. May 14, 2018.
- ↑ Cecchini, Michael. "Don't be fooled by #TheOrville being held until midseason. Network calls it a "huge priority." #FOXUpfronts". Twitter. May 14, 2018.
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 "The Orville Fan Podcast w/ The Visual Effects Team". Planetary Union Network. May 23, 2018.
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 Surette, Tim. "The OrvilleSeason 2 Will Be Bigger, But We'll Probably Have to Wait for It". TVGuide. Jan. 4, 2017.
- ↑ Serienjunkies. "THE ORVILLE: Interview mit den Produzenten um Brannon Braga der SciFi-Serie | SDCC 2018". YouTube. July 24, 2018.
- ↑ Longeretta, Emily. "‘The Orville’ Season 2: Seth MacFarlane on His Mom’s Impact, Tonal Changes". Us Weekly. Dec. 22, 2018.
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 Pascale, Anthony. "Interview: David A. Goodman On How ‘The Orville’ Wrapped Up Season Two And Where It Could Go Next". TrekMovie. May 3, 2019.
- ↑ "The Orville star Adrianne Palicki beams aboard the ORVILLELAND podcast". ORVILLELAND. Jan. 4, 2019.
- ↑ Andreeva, Nellie. ‘The Orville’: Jessica Szohr Cast As Series Regular For Season 2 Of Fox Series. Deadline. Feb. 12, 2018.
- ↑ Petski, Denise. "‘The Orville’: Chris Johnson Set To Recur On Season 2 Of Seth MacFarlane’s Fox Dramedy". Deadline. Feb. 21, 2018.
- ↑ Snapchat videos by jleefilms. Compiled by /u/arrowsofshield. "The first table read of season 2 is today!" Reddit.com. Feb. 23, 2018.
- ↑ Topel, Fred. "SETH MACFARLANE ADDRESSES CRITICS’ HARSH TAKE ON THE ORVILLE STORY LINE". Rotten Tomatoes. March 19, 2018.
- ↑ "I couldn't be happier starting my new job today. Director/Producer on Season 2 of #TheOrville" @joncassar. Instagram. Jan. 9, 2018.
- ↑ Wright, Matt. "‘The Orville’ Season 2 Production Starts, Star Trek Writer Joe Menosky Joins". TrekMovie. Feb. 26, 2018.
- ↑ "#707 (Tom Costantino ACE of "The Orville")". Going POSTal. May 13, 2019.
- ↑ Burks, Raymond. "Neil deGrasse Tyson Consults on The Orville's Scientific Accuracy". ScreenRant. Oct. 9, 2018.
- ↑ Lineweaver, Stephen & Robert Strohmaier. "The Orville: A Chance to Design the Future". ADG Perspective. July-Aug. 2018. Pg. 99-101.
- ↑ @joncassar. "Another shooting week begins on #TheOrville". Instagram. March 26, 2018.
- ↑ 28.0 28.1 Cassar, Jon. "Here we go #TheOrville season 2 starts shooting. Stay tuned." Instagram. Feb. 26, 2018.
- ↑ @joncassar. On the Fox backlot setting up the first shot of our last shooting day of season 2 on #TheOrville. Instagram. Oct. 15, 2018.
- ↑ @joncassar. "A little second unit pickup shooting today on #TheOrville ...coming at ya In December". Instagram. Oct. 29, 2018.
- ↑ 31.0 31.1 @TomCostantino. "MORE-VILLE stuff from my phone. Future throwback #BTS. The last set up of Sesaon 2. @SethMacFarlane @TheOrville #TheOrville @planetary_union @joncassar". Twitter. March 6, 2019.
- ↑ @vintageivy. "This Assistant Costume Designer is all packed up and ready for #theorville few weeks of hiatus. #seeyounexttime #shipmetoanywherefun #willtravel #packituppackitin #behindthescenes". Instagram. May 12, 2018.
- ↑ @StJerome. Untitled. Twitter. Oct. 14, 2018.
- ↑ For example, see this untitled photograph posted by @StJerome. Twitter (Oct. 14, 2018).
- ↑ @TheLizHarding. "My first wrap gift. Setting the bar high @SethMacFarlane. Thanks for all you do and a huge shoutout to everyone behind the scenes that helped make season two a reality! #TheOrville". Twitter. Oct. 14, 2018.
- ↑ /u/markjacksonacts. "I’m Mark Jackson and I play AI badass Isaac on The Orville. Ask me questions!". Reddit. Feb. 4, 2019.
- ↑ THE ORVILLE SEASON 2 GAG REEL. Planetary Union Network. April 30, 2019.
- ↑ @pennyjjerald. Video. Twitter. Oct. 16, 2018.
- ↑ []
- ↑ Goldman, Michael. "Space Farce : The Exploratory Workflow of ‘The Orville’". CineMontage. Aug. 17, 2018.
- ↑ "#253: Scott Grimes from The Orville and American Dad". Comic Book Central. Dec. 23, 2018.
- ↑ 42.0 42.1 McPherson, Doug. "Reducing Ad Load Easier Said Than Done for Fox; NBCU’s Rollout Smoother". Response. June 6, 2018.
- ↑ 43.0 43.1 /u/editboy1000. "The Orville Renewed For Season 3? More Evidence of Shows Return". Reddit. April 28, 2019.
- ↑ Goldman, Michael. "Space Farce : The Exploratory Workflow of ‘The Orville’". CineMontage. Aug. 17, 2018.
- ↑ "La-La Land Records Presents: The Music of "The Orville"". La-Land Entertainment. May 9, 2019.
- ↑ MacFarlane, Seth. "To correct a bit of misreporting: No, there won’t be an Orville/Family Guy crossover, and yes, The Orville season 2 will arrive later this year." Twitter. Jan. 7, 2018.
- ↑ Amodio, Joseph V. "Penny Johnson Jerald talks 'The Orville,' 'Star Trek,' more". Newsday. Dec. 19, 2018.
- ↑ 48.0 48.1 "The Orville Fan Podcast w/ Tom Costantino, Scott Powell, Bart Rachmil & Hillary Wills". Planetary Union Network. March 19, 2018.
- ↑ Dickie, George. "‘The Orville’ – Don’t ask Scott Grimes for spoilers". OnTVToday. Feb. 6, 2019.
- ↑ "PaleyFest 2018 LA lineup". Paley Center. Last accessed June 3, 2018.
- ↑ "The Orville Fan Podcast w/ Tom Costantino, Scott Powell, Bart Rachmil & Hillary Wills". Planetary Union Network. Planetary Union Network. March 19, 2018.
- ↑ @TomConstantino. "Props!!!! Wandering the floor. @planetary_union @odddanout @TheOrville #TheOrvilleSDCC @Brooki_eh". Twitter. July 21, 2018.
- ↑ @NY_Comic_Con. "Due to a scheduling conflict, the cast of THE ORVILLE will not be attending NYCC this year and the panel has been cancelled.". Twitter. Sept. 28, 2018.
- ↑ u/editboy1000. "Sorry gang. Still, shooting! Tried to save the panel until the last minute. Was going to release some new material for the panel. hoping to have it out before the premiere." Reddit. Sept. 29, 2018.
- ↑ Bobbin, Jay. "Seth MacFarlane’s ‘The Orville’ takes off for Season 2 on Fox". ONTVToday. Dec. 24, 2018.
- ↑ Schnurr, Samantha. "The Orville Co-Stars Scott Grimes and Adrianne Palicki Are Engaged" E! News. Jan. 18, 2019.
- ↑ The Orville: Season Two Ratings. TV Series Finale. Dec. 31, 2018.