Orange Is the New Black Season 7 is just around the corner, and fans are wondering when and what will happen when they step back into Litchfield Max.
The popular Netflix original series, often dubbed one of the shows that laid the groundwork for the streaming service's original content, has been confirmed to be returning for its final season sometime in the latter half of 2019. The news was revealed in Netflix's first-quarter shareholder letter on Tuesday, April 16, meaning that it will return sometime on or after July 1.
"We're looking forward to a strong slate of global content in the second half of the year, including new seasons of some of our biggest series, Stranger Things (July 4th), 13 Reasons Why, Orange is the New Black, The Crown and La Casa de Papel (aka Money Heist)," the letter read in part.
The series wrapped production in February, creator Jenji Kohan revealed, meaning that it is just a matter of time before the series gets a premiere date. If past seasons are any clue, Season 7 will likely debut sometime in July, just as Season 1 and Season 6 did. Seasons 2-5, on the other hand, premiered in June.
But what will happen when fans revisit their favorite inmates in the new season?
Viewers will recall that Season 6 threw some major twists, including the early release of both Piper and Blanca Flores, who was then taken into ICE custody, and the life sentence of Taystee, who had been wrongfully convicted of second-degree murder in the killing of C.O. Desi Pescatella.
It is likely that Season 7 will continue to follow their stories, showing Piper adjusting to life outside of Litchfield while Alex remains behind bars with the other prisoners fans have come to love.
That means that fans can expect Taylor Schilling and Laura Prepon to return for their respective roles of Piper and Alex. Uzo Aduba's Crazy Eyes, Danielle Brooks' Taystee, Laura Gomez's Blanca, Adrienne C Moore's Black Cindy, Natasha Lyonne's Nicky, Dale Soules' Frieda, Kate Mulgrew's Red, and Dascha Polanco's Daya are also expected to return.
As for the inmates who were not present in Season 6 – Maritza, Soso, and Chang – thanks to the Season 5 prison riot that resulted in the inmates being deparated and transferred to a number of different prisons?
"If the story takes us there, it has to be organic for us," producer Tara Herrmann told The Hollywood Reporter. "We never want to suddenly be in a world that we haven't set up. But we love those characters and miss them as storytellers for sure, so we hope to always see them."
Seasons 1-6 of Orange Is the New Black are currently available for streaming on Netflix. Season 7 does not yet have a premiere date.