Season 3 of the TV adaptation of Philip Pullman's popular fantasy trilogy His Dark Materials is returning to our screens at the weekend.

It's been nearly two years since season 2 of His Dark Materials drew to a close on BBC Two.

Oxford author Sir Philip won critical acclaim for his fantasy series featuring the novels Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.

READ AGAIN: His Dark Materials Season 3 will hit our screens

Dafne Keen plays Lyra Belacqua, with James McAvoy as Lord Asriel and Ruth Wilson as Marisa Coulter, while Will is played by Amir Wilson.

Oxford Mail:

Based on The Amber Spyglass – the third book in the trilogy – the new season will bring the story of Lyra and Will to a climax, as the duo help Lord Asriel in an epic battle against 'the Authority'.

James McAvoy is returning as season one's Lord Asriel after being largely absent from season two (barring a surprise cameo in the final episode), with his character playing a larger role in the book the next season is based on.

Similarly, Joe Tandberg’s bear-king Iorek Byrnison returns for a larger part after sitting out most of season two.

Lyra is seen back with her mother Mrs Coulter after the events of the season 2 finale, and is still on the run from the Magisterium, as the leader of the shadowy religious organisation orders new character Father Gomez (Jamie Ward) to find her "dead or alive".

Oxford Mail:

James McAvoy previously said there was a lot to look forward to in season 3, promising "a lot of fisticuffs and a lot of explosions" in the "down and dirty" action for this season.

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Mrs Coulter star Ruth Wilson backed his comments, calling the third season "definitely sort of the most ambitious, I think of the three".

The series is being shown on the BBC and streaming service HBO.

Series 3 began production in 2021, with James McAvoy revealing that filming had started again in Wales after some Covid-based delays.

The first episode of Season 3 of His Dark Materials will be screened on BBC1 and BBC iPlayer on Sunday at 7pm.

Oxford Mail:

In 2017 Sir Philip revisited Lyra's story with La Belle Sauvage, the first in a new trilogy called The Book of Dust, and The Secret Commonwealth followed in 2019.

Oxford landmarks - including the Bodleian Library and The Trout Inn - took centre stage in La Belle Sauvage.

The author chose the Bodleian’s 17th century Convocation House for the launch of the first book in the new trilogy.

The final part of The Book of Dust trilogy has not yet been published.

A fan site said the author is still working on the novel and hopes it will be published by September 2023.

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This story was written by Andy Ffrench, he joined the team more than 20 years ago and now covers community news across Oxfordshire.

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