It has been more than a year since the series final of Netflix's Ozark, yet audiences are wondering if Jason Bateman’s hit thriller will ever come back for a Season 5.
The beloved series followed Bateman's Marty Byrde, an everyday financial advisor, and his family as he gets caught up in a money laundering scheme gone wrong.
However, as it stands, it seems as though the door may be closed on a potential fifth outing for the Byrde family.
Has Ozark Been Renewed for Season 5?
At the time of writing, Season 5 has yet to be announced for Netflix's Ozark.
Season 4 Part 2 debuted on the service back in April 2022 with the cast sharing an emotional farewell to the series on social media.
Showrunner Chris Mundy seems grateful they got to finish their story in the way they did. Alongside the announcement of Season 4, Bundy remarked, "We’re so happy Netflix recognized the importance of [the series]:"
"We’re so happy Netflix recognised the importance of giving 'Ozark' more time to end the Byrdes’ saga right."
However, he has since made it clear it was ultimately Netflix's decision to end the hit drama.
Bundy told The Daily Beast in January 2022 that he had been " talking to them about trying to end it in five [seasons]" before eventually compromising on a super-sized fourth season instead of doing a full fifth:
"I’ve been talking to them about trying to end it in five [seasons], and they weren’t sure if they wanted to do four or five, and Netflix is the one that hit upon the idea of doing four seasons but a longer order, with the idea always being that it would split."
He added, "Creatively, we didn’t think it would go past five" but made the compromise of the two-part Season 4:
"My gut feeling is that they have an appreciation for letting things run the right amount of time for them, and creatively. I know for us, creatively, we didn’t think it would go past five. Knowing where we wanted to end it—at least emotionally; we didn’t know all the mechanics of it—it felt like somewhere in that four-five season range was kind of perfect."
This is in line with what star Jason Bateman has said about the ending of the series as well. Before Season 3 hit Netflix, Bateman said, "There's always been the presumed area [of] three seasons, four seasons, five seasons" for Ozark (via Collider):
"I think there's always been the presumed area [of] three seasons, four seasons, five seasons, something like that. If you keep going for a whole lot longer, you're going to go over the cliff, or up over the peak of the mountain and you end up jumping the shark. So, given the intelligence of Marty Byrde and Wendy Byrde, if they keep going at this pitch for much longer, they're either going to be killed or put in jail. The alternative is to flatten out that pitch so that you don't end up jumping the shark, but then you start stalling just for additional episodes and seasons."
The reasons for Netflix pulling the plug on the show remain unclear; however, as the streamer has tried to cut costs in recent years, it seems to be doing less and less of these mega-budget prestige TV shows, opting for smaller, less expensive fare.
Will There Be a Season 5 of Ozark?
At this point, it seems unlikely a Season 5 of Ozark will ever come to pass, as Chris Mundy made it clear he had to fight to even get the episode count in Season 4 that he got.
And despite it not being called as such, Mundy treated the second part of Season 4 as a fifth season.
Speaking with The Wrap, he revealed in the writers' room, "We called [the episodes] 401-407 and 501-507," meaning that the second batch of episodes was a pseudo-Season 5 in his mind:
"When we worked in the writers' room on it, we called them 401-407 and 501-507, because we wanted to think of them the way that people were going to be experiencing them ... it’s a bit of a trick in that way, they’ve gotta feel of one piece but they’ve also gotta be satisfying when you sit down to watch the seven and you’re gonna have to wait months for the next, we wanted to make sure they felt complete."
That is not to say a real Season 5 could never happen.
When the finale was released star Jason Bateman did not shut the door completely on more potential stories being told in the Ozark universe.
In a conversation with Vanity Fair, Bateman spoke about the future of the Byrde family, speculating they have likely "[gone] up to Chicago" after spending the last few years down in the Ozarks, hoping they are "smarter now than when we first met them:"
“I would bet you that they’ll go up to Chicago and they’ll test this theory of Wendy’s, which is, Have we acquired enough political capital to put into play some things that will help folks? Acquiring that capital was messy, but will the ends justify the means? My assumption is that, while they’re smarter now than when we first met them, I still feel like their hubris and arrogance will continue to trip them up. I think humility would probably guide them towards some better decisions, but I don’t think they’re there yet, unfortunately.”
As Bateman teased, both his Marty and Julia Garner's Wendy Bryde are still alive by the time the Season 4/series finale rolls around, so there is always the potential for more should all parties have an interest in revisiting the show.
However, everyone involved in the series seems more to be at peace with the show ending after Season 4.
All four seasons of Ozark are streaming now on Netflix.