‘The Sympathizer’ Season 2 Would Likely Film in Paris

the sympathizer
Will ‘The Sympathizer’ Season 2 Film in Paris?Hopper Stone/SMPSP

The Sympathizer seeks to correct many narratives. The espionage drama hopes to finally tell the story of the Vietnam War through a Vietnamese prospective, prove that Robert Downey Jr. can play four characters onscreen together at the same time (spoiler: He absolutely can!), and tell a moving story in just seven episodes. As the credits roll on the finale, director Park Chan-wook & Co. surprisingly accomplish all three challenges.

The story of a communist spy called the Captain (Hoa Xuande)—and his time spent embedded in the South Vietnamese secret police—is adapted from Viet Thanh Nguyen’s Pulitzer Prize–winning 2015 novel of the same name. If you watched all seven episodes of the HBO series, you’re surely wondering whether The Sympathizer will adapt more of Nguyen’s work. The author wrote a sequel titled The Committed in 2021, which explores the Captain’s life in Paris after the war.

“If we get to continue this story, we get to shoot this in Paris,” Xuande tells Esquire in a new interview. “There’s so much more action, devastation, and loss. I want to get back into the character, because a lot of the first season was exploring identity and the philosophical dilemma of belief in ideology. It was a little bit more neurotic. But when we get into the second book, it's a lot more physical, more action-packed, and I would love to continue to tell this story.”

A limited series crossing over into continuing-series territory is a popular move right now. FX recently renewed Shōguna Japanese period drama on FX with major awards-season buzz—for two more seasons, right before the Emmy submissions were due. HBO pitched The Sympathizer as a seven-episode limited series, but the source material is there should they wish to continue. Here’s hoping that the network hears Xuande’s excitement and takes the hint. We would very much like to see the Captain doing kick-ass stunts in Paris.

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