Tragedy! The hot duke won't be back on Bridgerton season 2 and our hearts are broken. Regé-Jean Page, who played the Duke of Hastings, isn't returning to the Regency-era drama, confirmed by a note from Lady Whistledown herself.
Instead, Bridgerton season 2 will "turn to Lord Anthony Bridgerton's quest to find a Viscountess." Speaking of which, not only has Bridgerton cast Simone Ashley as Anthony's love interest Kate, the show is also adding Charithra Chandran as Kate's sister Edwina.
Bridgerton is adapted from Julia Quinn's popular novels and can be described as "Jane Austen meets Gossip Girl." The show follows the eponymous Bridgerton family as they navigate the Regency-era marriage market. And all the sordid secrets of the high-class London ton are chronicled with sharp wit by the anonymous columnist Lady Whistledown.
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Bridgerton season 1 focused on the rollercoaster relationship between eldest Bridgerton daughter Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon, the Duke of Hastings. They engaged in a fauxmance but end up falling in true love. The season concludes with Daphne and Simon welcoming a baby.
Season 2 will draw its main story from Quinn's second novel, The Viscount Who Loved Me, which spotlights the eldest Bridgerton brother, Anthony (Jonathan Bailey), and his search for a wife.
"We left him at the end of the first season at a bit of a crossroads," series creator Chris Van Dusen said on the Today show, "so I’m looking forward to jumping in and discovering how he fares on the marriage market."
Here's everything we know so far about Bridgerton season 2.
Bridgerton season 2 release date
Netflix announced its renewal the series on January 21, but did not set a Bridgerton season 2 release date.
Production is underway (cast member Nicola Coughlan revealed on Twitter that she's already done costume fittings). Filming will begin this spring, according to the "letter" issued by Lady Whistledown that came with Netflix's announcement:
Filming is likely to last for several months. Season 1 took about 10 months from when filming wrapped in February 2020 and the Christmas Day premiere. If Bridgerton season 2 follows a similar timeline, then we might not get the new episodes until late spring or even summer 2022.
Bridgerton season 2 cast won't have Regé-Jean Page
Bridgerton's season 2 cast will bring back most of the key players from season 1. But the focus will shift to Jonathan Bailey as Anthony Bridgerton, the rakish young viscount.
However, one of the leads of season 1, Regé-Jean Page as Simon, is not returning according to Lady Whistledown's note: "We'll miss Simon's presence onscreen, but he will always be a part of the Bridgerton family."
Page, who hosted Saturday Night Live in February, called Bridgerton "the ride of a lifetime" on Instagram. He added, "It's been an absolute pleasure and a privilege to be your Duke."
Phoebe Dynevor will be back as Daphne, who remains "remain a devoted wife and sister, helping her brother navigate the upcoming social season."
We expect to see the other Bridgerton family members:
- Ruth Gemmell as Violet, the Dowager Viscountess Bridgerton, and mother to the siblings
- Luke Thompson as Benedict Bridgerton, the second Bridgerton sibling
- Luke Newton as Colin Bridgerton, the third Bridgerton sibling
- Claudia Jessie as Eloise Bridgerton, the fifth Bridgerton sibling
- Ruby Stokes as Francesca Bridgerton, the sixth Bridgerton sibling
- Will Tilston as Gregory Bridgerton, the seventh Bridgerton sibling
- Florence Hunt as Hyacinth Bridgerton, the eighth and youngest Bridgerton sibling
Bridgerton season 2 will also bring back Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington, the youngest Featherington daughter and secretly Lady Whistledown. Her identity is revealed in the season 1 finale.
(And we'll also continue to hear Julie Andrews as Lady Whistledown's voice).
The show will feature Penelope's family: Polly Walker as Portia, Baroness Featherington; Bessie Carter as Prudence Featherington, the eldest Featherington daughter; and Harriet Cains as Philippa Featherington, the middle Featherington daughter.
It's possible we'll also see Ruby Barker as Marina Thompson, the Featheringtons' cousin. A pregnant Marina left London after agreeing to marry her dead lover's brother, Sir Phillip Crane (Chris Fulton).
Other Bridgerton season 2 cast members may include:
- Golda Rosheuvel as Queen Charlotte
- Sabrina Bartlett as Siena Rosso, an opera singer and Anthony's former lover
- Julian Ovenden as Sir Henry Granville, an artist who befriends Benedict
- Geraldine Alexander as Mrs. Wilson, the Bridgerton housekeeper
- Lorraine Ashbourne as Mrs. Varley, the Featheringtons' housekeeper
- Kathryn Drysdale as Genevieve Delacroix, a popular modiste
- James Fleet as King George III
Bridgerton season 2 new cast members
As for new faces, Bridgerton season 2 has already cast two crucial roles: Charithra Chandran will play Edwina Sheffield, a young debutante who becomes the next Incomparable. And Simone Ashley is Edwina's older sister Kate, who is Anthony's love interest. The sisters have been re-conceived as being of Indian descent, in keeping with the show's diverse cast.
Deadline reported that Rupert Young has been cast in a major role that's not in the books. His character has connection to one of London's most notable families and a Bridgerton mystery.
Bridgerton season 2 spoilers
Spoiler warning: The following contains detailed information about Julia Quinn's novel The Viscount Who Loved Me.
While Bridgerton the series hasn't exactly followed Quinn's novels to the letter, season 1 did closely track the plot of her first Bridgerton book, The Duke and I.
Some storylines were shifted from later books, like Marina's pregnancy and the reveal of Lady Whistledown's identity.
If the main plot of Bridgerton season 2 adheres to The Viscount Who Loved Me, it'll be all about Anthony Bridgerton. He decides to find a bride and settles on Edwina Sheffield, a beautiful debutante who is deemed the season's new Incomparable. But to win her hand, he has to win over Edwina's older stepsister, Kate.
Unfortunately, the smart and sassy Kate hates Anthony at first (very Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy). So, how do they get together?
First, you need to know that Anthony's father, the previous viscount, died of an allergic reaction to a bee sting. So, Anthony is terrified of bees. The Bridgerton season 1 finale episode ended with a shot of a bee buzzing around the window.
When Kate is stung by a bee on her chest, Anthony sucks out the venom — which totally compromises her. He does the right thing and proposes marriage. But just like Daphne and Simon, the new couple finds life after the wedding a bit rocky. It'll take some time for them to achieve their happily ever after.
As for other potential Bridgerton season 2 plots, we expect to see Eloise continue her quest to unmask Lady Whistledown (without knowing it's her best friend, Penelope). Meanwhile, the Featheringtons are on shaky ground now that the Baron has died and there's a new, unknown heir.
Bridgerton season 2 may also set up a third installment, which would likely focus on Benedict, so we may see the second eldest sibling continue to explore his artistic side.
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