'Bridgerton' season 4: Everything we know so far

Will Tilston as Gregory Bridgerton, Florence Hunt as Hyacinth Bridgerton, Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton, Ruth Gemmell as Lady Violet Bridgerton, Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton, Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in episode 308 of Bridgerton
(Image credit: Liam Daniel/Netflix)

Sure, "Bridgerton" season 3 and all of its carriage-rattling, Lady Whistledown-revealing fun has sadly come to an end — you can revisit the romantic adventures of Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) and Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) with a Netflix subscription — but that just means it's time to turn our attention to next season. 

Yes, "Bridgerton" season 4 was announced by the streaming platform all the way back in April 2021, and we've already got burning questions about the upcoming episodes. The biggest one: which Bridgerton sibling will serve as this season's romantic lead? 

The third season, which adapted the "Polin" storyline from Julia Quinn's fourth "Bridgerton" novel, shook up the order of the books, so season 4 could potentially follow Colin's older bro Benedict (Luke Thompson), their sister Eloise (Claudia Jessie) or newly married younger sis Francesca (Hannah Dodd), who had a memorable meeting in that moving season 3 finale

Whichever sibling focuses on, "Bridgerton" season 4 will surely have all of the opulent costumes, sumptuous ballrooms and romantic steaminess we've come to expect from the Netflix series. Here's everything you need to know about "Bridgerton" season 4. 

'Bridgerton' season 4 release date window

Bad news, Ton diehards: there's going to be a bit of a wait for "Bridgerton" season 4. Fans can expect to see a new season sometime in 2026, per a recent interview with "Bridgerton" showrunner Jess Brownell. 

“We are working to try and put the seasons out more quickly, but they do take eight months to film and then they have to be edited, and then they have to be dubbed into every language,” Brownell told The Hollywood Reporter. “And the writing takes a very long time as well, so we’re kind of on a two-year pace. We’re trying to speed up, but somewhere in that range.”

A two-year wait isn't unprecedented for the series: The first season premiered in December 2020, with season 2 following in March 2022 and season 3 dropping in May of this year. 

At least the powers that be are planning to make the wait worth your while:
“I’m really excited about what we’re writing. We’re toward the end with the writers room season, with the scripts. And I feel like it’s some of my best work and my writers room’s best work," Brownell said. "We’ve just really gelled our collaboration, and we’re firing on all cylinders, so I can’t wait for fans to see what we have.

In April 2021, Netflix announced its renewal of season 3 and season 4. At the time, Netflix VP of Global TV Bela Bajaria said, “Bridgerton swept us off our feet. The creative team, led by Shonda, knew the material and delivered a beautiful, emotional, romantic drama for our members. They have some exciting plans for the future, and we think audiences will continue to swoon for this show. We’re planning to be in the Bridgerton business for a long time to come."

It's unclear if season 4 will follow in the footsteps of its predecessor and be split into two parts, or if all of the episodes will hit the streamer in go. It's likely that, like the first three editions of the show, the fourth season will also feature eight episodes.

'Bridgerton' season 4 cast

The cast of Bridgerton in season 3

(Image credit: Liam Daniel/Netflix)

Though “Bridgerton” season 3 mainly focused on the coupling of Colin and Penelope (who — spoiler alert! — got their happily-ever-after, including a sweet giggling baby, by the season's end), it featured plenty of romantic hijinks for the rest of the Bridgerton clan, from Benedict further exploring his sexuality to Eloise leaving the Ton for a sojourn to Scotland with Francesca, her new hubby John Stirling (Victor Alli) and his beguiling cousin Michaela (Masali Baduza). 

According to the IMDb cast list for the fourth season premiere, Luke Thompson’s Benedict and Claudia Jessie’s Eloise will both be back for the new episodes, as well as Nicola Coughlan’s Penelope and Luke Newton’s Colin. "I love my role in the show, so I can't see myself going anywhere. I just want to finish the stories off, Newton told Teen Vogue. "I would say there's still stuff to get sorted in season 4, so yeah, that's why I'm there.”

Hannah Dodd's Francesca, as well as younger Bridgerton siblings Hyacinth (Florence Hunt) and Gregory (Will Tilston) are also expected to return for season 4. And given that Bridgerton matriarch Violet, played by Ruth Gemmell, had her own fair share of romantic tension in season 3 opposite Lady Danbury's brother, Lord Marcus Anderson (Daniel Francis), we expect to see both mama and her love interest next season. 

IMDb also lists the return of Penelope's mother, Philipa Featherington (Polly Walker), as well as the Ton's resident mean girl Cressida Cowper (Jessica Madsen), who can definitely use a redemption arc next season. Other familiar faces like Adjoa Andoh, Golda Rosheuvel as Queen Charlotte, Martins Imhangbe as Will Mondrich and Emma Naomi as Alice Mondrich are also likely to return.

It's unclear whether previous "Bridgerton" main couples will join Coughlan and Newton in returning to the Ton for season 4. At the end of last season, Viscount Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey) and pregnant wife Kate (Simone Ashley) set off for India to have their child, which would be a convenient out for both busy actors to skip next season. 

However, Brownell spoke to Variety about the couple's potential return. "We absolutely hope to see more of them. But it’ll be dependent on a lot of factors. It’ll be dependent on how much story the main couples take up, and whether there is story room. It will be dependent on whether the actors are available...we try to be very respectful of our actors in terms of letting them go off and do other things," she told the outlet. 

"And it works perfectly fine for us, because of the nature of the show shifting focus. We always want to give our main couple that screen time. So we’ll see what happens. But I love those two, and I would always be happy to see more from them."

'Bridgerton' season 4 spoilers and book story

Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton

(Image credit: Liam Daniel/Netflix)

Spoiler warning: The following contains detailed information about Julia Quinn's novels "An Offer From a Gentleman" and "Romancing Mr. Bridgerton."

While "Bridgerton" the series hasn't entirely followed Quinn's novels to the letter, seasons 1 and 2 did closely track the plot of her first two "Bridgerton" books, "The Duke and I" and "The Viscount Who Loved Me." Some storylines were shifted from later books, like the revelation of Lady Whistledown's identity. 

However, season 3 diverged from the books. It did not take story cues from book 3, "An Offer From a Gentleman," which features a Cinderella-like romance between Benedict Bridgerton and a new character named Sophie Beckett. Instead, the third season skipped over Benedict's story and drew from the fourth book, "Romancing Mr. Bridgerton," which focuses on Colin Bridgerton and Penelope Featherington. 

So does that mean season 4 will get things back on track and focus on Benedict? Showrunner Jess Brownell didn't outright specify which Bridgerton sibling would be getting the TV treatment for season 4, but she did hint that viewers should watch season 3 with a close eye. 

She revealed to TV Insider: "I won’t give you anything, but I do think that there are some clues at the end of season 3 of where we’re headed. So yeah, I leave that to fans to pick apart, but I think we’re tipping our hand just a little bit."

The last we saw of Benedict in the season 3 finale, he had just rejected Lady Tilley Arnold (Hannah New) and her proposal of a monogamous relationship, sans their recent paramour Paul Suarez (Lucas Aurelio), in favor of staying single and exploring his sexuality. That exploration will continue in future episodes, Brownell told TheWrap: “This is not the end of that storyline. As any fluid person knows, fluidity is a part of your identity, whether or not you end up with a man, a woman or a nonbinary person.”

And as for Sophie Beckett, "The introduction of Sophie is definitely still in the cards, but we are going to continue to explore [Benedict's] fluidity,” Brownell told the outlet. The end of season 3 did tease the debut of that character next season: Eloise says to Benedict that she’s going to be home in a few months for Violet’s masquerade ball, and "Bridgerton" book readers might remember that Benedict and Sophie first meet at such a social event.

Tom's Guide will keep you posted on all things "Bridgerton" season 4, but in the meantime, you can rewatch the drama's first three seasons on Netflix. 

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Christina Izzo

Christina Izzo is a writer-editor covering culture, food and drink, travel and general lifestyle in New York City. She was previously the Deputy Editor at My Imperfect Life, the Features Editor at Rachael Ray In Season and Reveal, as well as the Food & Drink Editor and chief restaurant critic at Time Out New York.