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Jonathan Bailey, Simone Ashley + More Attend The Press Conference For BRIDGERTON Season 2

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From Shondaland and Creator Chris Van Dusen, the second season of Bridgerton follows Lord Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey), the eldest Bridgerton sibling and Viscount, as he sets out to find a suitable wife. Driven by his duty to uphold the family name, Anthony’s search for a debutante who meets his impossible standards seems ill-fated until Kate (Simone Ashley) and her younger sister Edwina (Charithra Chandran) Sharma arrive from India. When Anthony begins to court Edwina, Kate discovers the true nature of his intentions — a true love match is not high on his priority list — and decides to do everything in her power to stop the union. But in doing so, Kate and Anthony’s verbal sparring matches only bring them closer together, complicating matters on both sides. Across Grosvenor Square, the Featheringtons must welcome the newest heir to their estate while Penelope (Nicola Coughlan) continues to navigate the town whilst keeping her deepest secret from the people closest to her.

Bridgerton is a romantic, scandalous, and clever series that celebrates the timelessness of enduring friendships, families finding their way, and the search for a love that conquers all. The series also stars Adjoa Andoh (Lady Danbury), Lorraine Ashbourne (Mrs. Varley), Harriet Cains (Philipa Featherington), Bessie Carter (Prudence Featherington), Shelley Conn (Mary Sharma), Nicola Coughlan (Penelope Featherington), Phoebe Dynevor (Daphne Basset), Ruth Gemmell (Violet Bridgerton), Florence Hunt (Hyacinth Bridgerton), Martins Imhangbe (Will Mondrich), Claudia Jessie (Eloise Bridgerton), Luke Newton (Colin Bridgerton), Golda Rosheuvel (Queen Charlotte), Luke Thompson (Benedict Bridgerton), Will Tilston (Gregory Bridgerton), Polly Walker (Portia Featherington), Rupert Young (Jack), and Julie Andrews (Lady Whistledown), and Julie Andrews as the voice of Lady Whistledown. The series is inspired by Julia Quinn’s novels.

Comprised of eight close-knit siblings, this funny, witty, daring and clever group must navigate the upper ten thousand’s marriage mart in search of romance, adventure and love.

Moderator: Without further ado, I’m very, very, very excited to introduce our panellists for today. So we have Polly Walker. We have Bessie Carter. We have Golda Rosheuvel. We have Luke Thompson. We have Luke Newton. We have Chris Van Dusen, Simone Ashley. Jonathan Bailey and Charithra Chandran. Thank you so much. Everybody comfortable. Everyone’s got the nice water because it makes I want to make sure I was OK with this. Everyone’s good.



Chris. You looked straight at me. Hello. Hello. Let’s kick off with you. So season two is different from the book The Viscount Who Loved Me. Can you tell us a bit about what fans can expect?

Chris Van Dusen: Oh, fans should expect a wild, wild ride this season. I mean, we worked really hard to bring everything that fans fell in love with about season one into season two. And I think we did it and it’s it’s amazing. It’s emotional and romantic and sexy and scandalous, and I think we’re back for an even greater escape into 19th century Regency London.


Tell us about where we find Anthony this season.

Jonathan Bailey: So we start the season with Anthony making a conscious decision that he needs to find a wife, but only to find one that would suit him on the page and not, you know, link up with his heart and his love. He’s taking love out of the equation, and he’s had this quite complicated sort of mistress affair in series one. And yeah, he’s he’s shaved off his sideburns and he’s ready to go.


Sounds great. I wanted to direct this next question to both yourself, Simone and Charithra, and because obviously you’re joining such a great production. Huge, successful. Do you have any funny stories about how you are welcomed on set?

Simone Ashley: I mean, a lot of Instagram DMs sliding, I would say, yeah, everyone, everyone in the cast was so warm and welcoming and just sent a message just being just, you know, understanding how overwhelming and exciting it could feel. But just it was really like, you know, welcome aboard and enjoy the ride.

Charithra Chandran: I think we kind of have the ideal first day because it was almost like a baptism of fire, it was such a large group scene. So we got to meet everyone straight out of the gate, which was the ideal way. And when you have this kind of large set sequences, also, there’s time to get to know people because you’re waiting around. So, yeah, we met everyone at once and it was the perfect way to do it.



So the Bridgerton brothers, Benedict and Colin are both in different places to Anthony this season. Can you tell us a bit about their journeys this time around? How do they feel about the marriage months?

Luke Thompson: Well, I think Benedict doesn’t really understand the marriage market, really. And I also think he it’s it’s a lovely position to be in because he’s watching. It’s like Anthony is his canary at the bottom of the mine is that the expression may not be the right expression with that thing. When is that the right thing? Well, it’s sort of like, you know, you get to yeah, you can say it is. I’m yeah, you’re a canary at the bottom of the mine, which means that you can sort of like that sort of very brotherly way experience everything that’s going on. But through someone else and sort of seeing how it’s how it’s impacting him and obviously then learning a lot about himself in the process, I think, which is really fun to play because it feels so and it rings so true as a sort of brotherly connexion to sort of see like older brother to younger brother sort of thing. Yeah. I think.

Luke Newton: I think for Colin, he’s kind of removed himself from any romantic feeling this year. He’s come back from his travels with some interesting facial hair. And he, yeah, he’s kind of he’s kind of detached himself from feeling anything romantically. So it’s been it’s, you know, it was really nice to see the story unfold between these three in front of me. And for Colin to feel kind of removed from that and kind of in his own head, he’s so distracted this year. He had he had a lot going on and trying to revisit stuff from season one, which a lot of the other characters are kind of past. He’s very much still back in so torment from last year, so it was kind of cool to revisit season one for Colin.



So we learn a bit more about Queen Charlotte and her own love story this season. Can you talk a little bit about that?

Golda Rosheuvel: Well, I think the love story for her is obviously with her beautiful, gorgeous husband, who is going through some deep trauma. And I think I’m really grateful for those scenes because it, you know, we could have written a one dimensional character who has fabulous frocks and beautiful wigs, who goes to the balls and, you know, does gossip all that kind of stuff, but you get to see her humanity. You get to see her vulnerability in those scenes. And you know, to play that as an actress is is everything because you want to play a full, rounded character. So, yeah, we’ve got some really beautiful scenes in season two.


How about Prudence, her marriage and this season? How keen is she to marry, really? Do you think?

Bessie Carter: What do you think? She’s desperate? I have to hold it with both hands. I’m going to break into song and I am just like, you know, she is still on the marriage market. I mean, it’s all these young women knew, and it was all, unfortunately, that they had to achieve, really. So yes, Mama is taking us to the balls to try to marry us off, and I think I don’t know what actually comes after marriage. I think I just go, I just want to get married. So, yeah, that is all she’s aiming for this series.


Polly, both Lady Danbury and Lady Featherington work are working their matchmaking skills once more this season, but with slightly different agendas. How is Lady Featherington meddling this season?

Polly Walker: Yeah, well, she’s highly motivated. She’s penniless, and so she’s throwing everything she’s got at it to get her girls secure and in a good position, you know, so she’s on it big time, as you’ll discover.



I want to talk a little bit about the game. Pall Mall fans seem incredibly excited for the game. Why is that scene so beloved, Chris? I’d love to get your opinion on this.

Chris Van Dusen: I mean, it’s. It’s classic Bridgerton, I mean, you have this amazing game on this incredible country, state state, it’s beautiful scenery. The camaraderie amongst the family is just so real and it’s compelling. And also, you know, a large part of the season is about a game and about the game that’s happening between Kate and Anthony and that Pall Mall sequence moves that story forward in some incredible ways.


Who of all of you would win at the game of Pall Mall.

Luke Thompson: I think we’re just going to say me. I think.

Charithra Chandran: Right now you did get it through.

Luke Thompson: But that was cheating. I got it through the hoop, but with my legs, which I’m not supposed to do. It’s best to use mallet. And I did break six mallets.

Luke Thompson: If you weren’t given a new mallet, then you wouldn’t win.

Golda Rosheuvel: And there is the family dynamic.

Luke Thompson: But no, I feel pretty confident that I would win.

Luke Newton: I think you’ll all know Johnny’s got really good technique. You were annoyingly good considering you couldn’t rehearse with.

Jonathan Bailey: I remember Charithra being the best. 

Charithra Chandran: I think I took it the most seriously, was I the best? Probably not.

So is a resounding it would be Luke?

Luke Thompson: Well, I’ve decided that. Yeah, that’s just me.



What was the hardest thing to shoot for you? Because there’s quite a lot of action. There’s horse riding, fencing, wearing giant wigs, which I think not enough people respect.

Golda Rosheuvel: Yeah, her ball in the night time, for me anyway. The Featherington ball, night shoot, raining fireworks.

Polly Walker: For me, it was genuinely when we we had a lovely moment of me trying to bowl, and I really wanted to be able to get them all down, which is what happens. I don’t think that’s a spoiler. And I couldn’t. And so we had those lovely props, and Jed and Neil had to get a rope so that when I rolled the rope did that. So it looked like they all fell. But I it revealed my competitive nature to myself. So that was for me personally, really hard.


With all of that, there must have been some outtakes. Who was the last that breaking into fits of laughter? Let’s be honest now…

Simone Ashley: It’s either Johnny or anyone with Johnny.

Jonathan Bailey: I mean, there’s something I think possibly about playing a character that’s sort of so inward anyway and so serious that there’s the line between that and hysteria is always there. But Chris is writing is amazing and demands a certain level of like, you know, cognitive thought. And when the Bridgerton family all together, we’re trying to get through our lines at speeds. You can just see if you just see one person falling off the metaphorical horse in terms of what, as you can see, the twinkle in their eye very quickly, those long scenes become, yeah, really traumatic.



Can any of you share a surprising fact from filming that viewers would never guess? I feel like Bessie your one was very good, but you’re done. Everyone else now has to step up to the plate.

Bessie Carter: Oh, I just like the really obvious thing. Well, it’s obvious, I think to us, but people don’t know is just the joy of on set. You’ve got the Featherington House and then you go across one corridor and then you’re in the Bridgerton house like that that that I quite like and you’d never know watching it. And I love that I still, to this day, just find it so amazing. Be look, it’s so thin and like, it’s just all fake. And the set line is just so extraordinary. So. yeah, that’s I like that.

Chris Van Dusen: I have a I have a post filming one, and that’s really a lot of the show was edited in my basement. I mean, you would expect me to be in this huge state of the art editing suite. But as a sign of the times due to the pandemic, we did all the editing virtually. And God bless my editors for being so patient. But there was a lot of just me in in my basement at home with sometimes 18 month old twins running around and a four year old running around. And they were actually a benefit to the show because I knew if they would dance to the orchestral pop songs that we were doing, then I knew that those songs were keepers.


I wanted to ask each of you to answer this one. Can you describe season two in one word? I’m going to give you five seconds and then I’m going to ask one by one. OK, Chris, let’s try and got to start with you. Let’s go.

Chris Van Dusen: Charged.

Polly Walker: Roller coaster.

Bessie Carter: OK, let’s see. Climax. OK. OK.

Simone Ashley: Volatility.

Golda Rosheuvel: Dynasty.

Jonathan Bailey: Yearning.

Luke Thompson: Different.

Charithra Chandran: Thoughtful.

Luke Thompson: Tense, that’s how I felt when I watched. I’m just like, there are some scenes that I wasn’t involved in and watching it, I’m like on the edge of my sofa and I’ve watched those scenes like multiple times. It’s amazing.


Thank you very much. And I put you on the spot. But that’s that’s my job. That is my job. There’s one character that the book fans adore, which is Newton Kate’s Corgi. How amenable was he to life in the ton?

Simone Ashley: I loved Newton, he listened to me, and I like that he was strong willed and literally did whatever he wanted. Whether it was action or cut, he didn’t care. He would just turn up whenever my diva, diva dog and my fondest memory of him is when we were filming at Aubrey Hall and at the front of the building, it’s like a pebble ground. And he would just eat the pebbles and he would just look down and he’d be like jumping away on stones.

Charithra Chandran: And then he passed out that day because he was too full.

Simone Ashley: He’s very well taken care of. Yeah, Kate make sure he’s hydrated. That’s for sure.

Jonathan Bailey: Full of pebbles and full of water. It was like he was cast by Andrea Arnold, like found in the street somewhere. All he loved his pebbles and sausage. It’s quite hard to work with, but then I suppose he’s got an innate sense of character and and I just really look forward seeing what he does next

Simone Ashley: His go to snacks in his trailer. Stone and pork.


OK, so I’m going to take some questions from some of the journeys and submit to them. So this one is from Reccomend Film from Malaysia, and this is to Polly and Bessie. The first question is what were your favourite moments of this season?

Polly Walker: I had lots, but I have to say, having my own ball was pretty special because I bet, you know, it was a miracle that I ever got invited to anyone else’s balls. So to actually have my own, I was in in total heaven.

Bessie Carter: Yeah, that was. I love any moment that Varley is in. Yeah, I just love when Varley. I just love the dynamic that she brings watching you two together and we’re always left out of it.

Polly Walker: Yeah, she’s a good servant, isn’t she?

Bessie Carter: Yeah, she’s a very good servant.


How do you think each of your characters have developed from the previous season to this season?

Polly Walker: I think in this season you definitely see different aspects to Portia. I think she’s more rounded. I think you see her struggles, her vulnerability, her sincerity. I mean, I I hope that people will appreciate everything that she struggles with and be on her side. So I think you definitely see more of that this season,

Bessie Carter: I think with Prue. She is really desperate to find a husband. And I think it’s actually quite damaging when you go to ball after ball and no one even looks at you what that is genuinely doing to your insides. So I really tried to find the seriousness in that, the truth in that and hopefully her sort of attempts to secure a match and potentially the failing of that, is also hopefully quite funny. And I enjoyed doing that. This series is finding the truth and hoping it’s funny.

Bessie Carter: Yeah, I think we’ve had lots of funny things to do. Thank you. Thanks, Chris

Great job, Chris. Great, Johnny.



What do you have in common with your character?

Jonathan Bailey: The things that I can find immediately identifiable and that we talked about Chris when we first met was about family. I’m from a big family. I’m the youngest, though, so I’ve got an easy perspective on what it must be like to be the eldest having not experienced that. But yeah, the understanding of of what it is to, I don’t know, fill a role within the bigger with being a gang and a bigger tribe. There’s a lot, but I don’t think I do you. It’s not very similar at all, but I mean, he’s quite stubborn and I know there’s things you sort of learn. He’s quite my experience of Series two was that it was quite isolating, I think, and obviously for me and Simone, I think both Kate and Anthony have this sort of weird thing where they exist for other people. And that sense of boundaries, I think, is something that they have to really come to terms with. And that isolation in their family scenes means that when they meet, they finally have this sort of addictive quality to the time spent together. So although maybe there’s not obvious things that I find similar. I think it made me think about a lot about what it is to love and what is to love yourself before you can love someone else. But also what? That’s what it is to be a soul mate, what it means to grow from trauma or to be stuck in something without identifying it. And obviously really interesting to study what that is for these two people who have experienced quite similar things in their past, but at a time where there was no conversation, really? And what that meant for the scenes with Ruth that I really enjoyed as well playing Violet. So, yeah, lots of I sort of made me quite introspective and reflective of myself, but there’s nothing necessarily that I can draw on.


You touched on Kate’s character, so I wanted to put my question to Simone and Charithra as they’re playing the new players in season two. So this question is from Movie News from Romania, and it’s simply what should we expect from the new players in season two?

Charithra Chandran: I think that the shamans are really an interesting family because one I like to think that they’re sort of the audience’s perspective in that they’re they’re not accustomed to the ton, they’re not familiar with its dealings, they have their ideas. So, yeah, they’re like sort of the audience’s advocates. And I think, particularly Kate and Edwina, you see a lot of sibling relationships. But I think there’s is super unique because again, they only have each other and they’ve grown up in isolation. So with that comes a sort of an increased dependency and higher stakes. Which can generate obviously so many positive things. But it also can mean that certain things can go wrong as well. So, yeah, it’s a very unique sibling dynamic.

Simone Ashley: And yeah, I’d agree there is that the there’s the love triangle and that really does represent the loving relationship between Edwina and Kate. And I think what’s so special about is it kind of the roles kind of reversed a little bit throughout the series. You first see Kate being this incredibly protective sister, sometimes maybe a little too overly protective, and Edwina is obviously this diamond, the diamond. And I feel actually Kate learns a lot more from Edwina as the series goes on. I think the arc is just really it’s just really interesting. And especially without giving any spoilers away by episode six, I think Charithra’s performance is just so powerful and comes out with a bang. And, you know, even doing the scenes during the episodes, you really find the depth within this family. Shelley Conn, who plays Lady Mary. It all really comes to a head and comes to life. I think it’s a really earned moment as well between them all. And what I like about the Sharma’s is, I think there is a bit of a sense of mystery to them. The stakes are high for them. They have to be protective of themselves. It’s kind of like a survival act and you really then slowly start to get through the cracks and see what this family’s about. What’s the history? And yeah, and then they kind of have to fall apart to then bond even stronger together.

Jonathan Bailey: So yeah, you can’t really imagine Bridgerton without the Sharma’s now.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, I think so. Yeah.

Charithra Chandran: What I love is that all of the sibling relationships in the show, they’re so realistic. It’s not always sort of sunshine and rainbows and flowers. It’s like there are up and downs, but it’s always with a foundation of love.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, it gets real. Yeah, yeah.


I’m glad you mentioned without giving away a spoiler because I feel constantly work for Netflix is a minefield. I have so many spoilers in my head. All the time is very, very stressful to the point where I was like, I can’t finish the whole of season two because I will spoil it by accident and then I’ll lose my job. I’ll lose my job. So what’s it about for you or how hard is it? I’m going off script. I just need to know. Give me some tips. How hard is it to not spoil your own show?

Luke Thompson: I find it quite hard.

Bessie Carter: I make a joke when in doubt, I just make a joke and just avoid the question.

Charithra Chandran: I just lie.

Polly Walker: Just say as little as you can basically, but also, if you do do something, you hope somebody is going to cut it.

Charithra Chandran: I just lie. Like, sometimes I say the most outrageous things and I’m like, You’re going to believe in print that go ahead, right? So I think I told everyone that Edwina dies in episode two. I was like, Guess she dies? Sorry.

Simone Ashley: I remember that scene.

Charithra Chandran: Yes, exactly. Really? And just a ghost. All the VFX.

Simone Ashley: Yeah. Fake blood, everything.


Johnny, playing Anthony in this series and being pushed into the spotlight. How do you prepare for that and what what kind of some of the challenges of being thrust into the lead role in this series?

Jonathan Bailey: I think it happened at an extraordinary time today, and the Series one came at a time when I think everyone needed to fall in love and be reminded what it is to be, you know, filled with joy. And following that meant that we were running up Series two still in the pandemic and still in lockdown. I started listening to the audiobook. That was my way of just sort of slowly trying to focus in on Anthony again. But, you know, it was. It’s such a unique way of telling a story, and I think that’s what makes Bridgerton thrilling. And as the world expands every year with amazing new actors coming in, only will you sort of lean into the further seasons of watching other Bridgerton fall in love in the way that they will. But yeah, it was, you know, there’s definitely added pressure. But the moment you start getting the scripts, you start having those conversations and the first one of the first things I did, the very first thing I did was do RuPaul’s Drag Race, and I got taken out of lockdown and thrown and suddenly it was next to Mummer Ro. So that was thrilling. But the only thing that could top that is meeting Simone, which was like a week later and we had a chemistry test and things just fall into place and you meet Simone and that was like, suddenly, it’s like, Okay, this is going to be a joy and really easy as well. You know, when you meet someone as well and have a partnership like we’ve had, I think everything just sort of clicks. And then, Chris, we had many conversations is it’s going to be so sad to not have him as our captain going forward. But the conversation we had meant that you can start speculating. And then Charithra came on the scene with her screen test. And obviously, you’ve got amazing actors all around and the sibs and the bros are just like, always there. So actually, it didn’t feel at all like stepping into a role that meant that there was massive amount of pressure because everyone cares so much. And we are one big family. And the knowledge of knowing how we’re going to pass the baton forward, I’ve got a little notebook to whoever’s next could be Will Tilson Young Gregory getting married at a very young age? Who knows? But yeah, so it’s a big it’s a big group effort, and I just think that we are. It’s such a once in a lifetime opportunity to to be cast in a family like this, knowing that, you know, and for the for the people who home who really buy the family. And yeah, we move as a unit. And so the pressure was, I mean, obviously, it’s a relief now it’s out. And I, you know, I’ve really enjoyed signing off on it. I’m looking forward to supporting everyone else now. So that’s good.


Obviously, the show’s been a gigantic success, but I’d be interested to know when you first read the script, is there anyone who was unsure or nearly turned down their role?

Luke Thompson: Absolutely not. No, no,

Luke Newton: no, no, no.

Luke Thompson: I think because you only get like a scene, you get a couple of scenes, that’s all you get. Well, that’s what I got anyway to start with. So you get such a strong it’s such a strong flavour. And when when I read the two they gave me were the swing scenes, the scenes on the swing with Elouise from season one. And you always have to clarify that the swing scene and and you know, you know, it’s just a couple of pages, but I just sort of felt, Oh, wow, that’s such a strong, clear conversation between a brother and sister that feels there is absolutely in the regency world, but feels completely believable today. And so it’s just it’s just a no brainer, you know, you just sort of read that and you think. Yeah. I want to do that. But yeah, I don’t know. For me, it was there’s nothing, it was a no brainer.

Simone Ashley: These are characters that we can all relate to with real human problems and real human experiences. And I think as as an audience, you can watch these different families and definitely find maybe witness you might be a part of. And I think collectively, as a cast and crew were quite yes, people, I would say. And we bring out the best in one another amongst the night shoots and the horse riding and all of that. It’s like, Well, yes, we’ve got this. So yeah.

Jonathan Bailey: How did you relate specifically to your character?

Simone Ashley: I would say there’s quite a few different things actually with quite I related to. I read, I like reserved people in general. I like people that you kind of have to earn the trust to get to know. And I saw that in Kate, and maybe I’m learning, maybe to just be less reserved and get over myself and be a bit more open. But I also I like that she she has a very warm, soft heart and maybe has an exterior where she is quite protective over that. And that’s mirrored in her protection of her family. I’m the youngest of my family as well, so I wouldn’t say that I had that role. But yeah, I think when one has a soft heart, it’s good to protect it.


Russ from Red Carpet News. I think it’s clear that the results of your work are glorious on screen, but real life is never quite so kind. So I wonder if perhaps starting with Johnny, you could share with us the most embarrassing or awkward moment you experienced or witnessed on set this season? Feel free to share one of your own or throw each other under the bus, whichever way it’s hilarious for us.

Jonathan Bailey: I feel like you know something does. Yeah, multiple moments of of looking at the braids, there’s the fencing sequence brought about as its complications. We had amazing. Obviously, the costumes are incredible across the board and obviously as men, we’re not going to complain about restrictive clothing. When we sat with the women in their corsets, but the fencing outfits were quite tight in various places and we were wearing plimsols on quite a dewy morning on the grass and going in for my final lunge with Benedict. My crotch ripped. And it was all on camera and it’s just in those moments. I think this is what you’re saying, what you suddenly realise you’re being filmed by four to three cameras that I just sort of scream, this is just so embarrassing,


A question for Chris, but also for Jonathan and Simone. If you’d like to answer. Compared to series one, there’s a lot less sex in this one. And I just wondered if that was a deliberate decision and if you’re worried that fans might be disappointed.

Chris Van Dusen: You know, it wasn’t. It was never about quantity for us, and our approach to intimacy on the show really is the same as season one. And that’s we use these intimate scenes to tell a story and to push a story forward. And we’ve never done a sex scene for the sake of doing a sex scene, and I don’t think we ever will. It all serves a larger purpose and it’s a different story. This season, different characters we are with Anthony and Kate most of this season, and that’s very different from Daphne and Simon. It’s a different, different story, and that’s really part of the draw to me of a project like this, the ability to tell these close ended love stories of different characters season after season.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, I think and it makes sense for these characters because they’re so protective over their families and they’re so truthful to their duty and responsibility, I would say so for them to kind of break that, I think wouldn’t have made sense for the characters. And as Chris has said, they aren’t performative sex scenes or intimate scenes. They they have a meaning behind them, and I think they’re very earnt when the fireworks happen.

Jonathan Bailey: And I think what is achieved in and which is also a nod to the future and how people fall in love, there’s so many different ways in which people connect with their own bodies and their intimacy. But I think Kate and Anthony feel explicit in the way that they feel naked in front of each other. And I think that’s also really, I mean, it’s a very interesting, cerebral way of exploring that sort of innate sexuality. Um, and I think it just bodes real well for the following seasons to to not just be expected for it to be about the sex, because that is a huge part of it with so many other amazing things that are explored and will be explored going forward.

Chris Van Dusen: And the chemistry, let me just say the chemistry between these two is just off the charts. It is just so amazing. And you know, there’s so much sexiness in just the looks across the room and the hands grazing and the fingers almost touching. And you can really feel that build from episode to episode, scene to scene, really. And you know that when we get there, the climax, if you will. The payoff is going to be well worth it.


My question is for Simone and Charithra. So obviously in this series, there is a Bollywood cover in the soundtrack, which I think a lot of South Asian viewers were really excited about. How did it feel to hear that for the first time?

Simone Ashley: I mean, I think it’s so much fun. I think what the show is done has, I think, just brought a sense of joy to including to representing many different cultures and for this one specifically South Asian cultures. And I think my intention anyway. I can’t speak for everyone is to just bring the fun and joy a part of that. I think, you know, representation and diversity on screen. It’s a very complex conversation that we’re all having all the time and it’s an important one. But for me personally, I just want to bring the fun to it now and the normality and the joy and to bring that through music in such an amazing scene, which we had so much fun filming. Yeah, it brings a smile to my face.

Charithra Chandran: So for me, like by the way, that movie and that song is like a Bollywood staple, so everyone’s raising that. So as soon as the song came on, I was like, hold on, and then rewind it and immediately paused, texted Chris. Being like, this literally brought tears to my eyes because it’s like the collision of both of my worlds. And, you know, I think when you’re growing up as immigrants children, sometimes it’s so hard to figure out your identity and like, you sometimes don’t know where you belong. And those are one of those kind of defining moments where you go, OK, I get it now. I can be both and I can do both. And especially that song, it’s such a family song, and they’ve got great meaning behind it that I think the scene also represents. So for me, it was like, Wow, that’s kind of indicative of my identity, and I love that. So, yeah, really, really special. I’m so grateful.



This is for Chris and Jonathan, the tension in this series is palpable. I was wondering, is there an art to capturing that on screen and is there anything you guys did off screen to help capture that chemistry?

Chris Van Dusen: You know, we did what we did from a writer’s perspective, and I put as many scripted moments as I could, but really, at the end of the day, it’s up to these guys and they’ve elevated those scenes in such an amazing, incredible way. I mean, I’ve described you guys as magnets and you can really feel that tension and you’re just drawn to each other throughout the season. And it’s it’s really something to behold.

Jonathan Bailey: Yeah, I suppose we did develop a sort of process, I think unspoken, which was that, you know, we knew that we were both in it and we worked, really, you know, obviously, really, you surrender your whole life when you do a series like this, when you’re in every day. We really looked after each other.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, we were both just as enthusiastic, I think. Yeah. So I think we have that in common that like that drive to it. We’re going to do this. Yeah.

Jonathan Bailey: And then you do you sort of there’s a trust that develops where we had to sort of touch base before a scene and just say, you know, loosely, have a moment. What I think is quite important. What I’ve discovered is that to make sure that the you keep your cards and your power together and that you’re united. And I think we touch base at the beginning of a scene. Obviously then you’d start work with the director and then we just developed a shorthand that was actually really when it came down to it just to look and we just be it would be able to just and, you know, we’d be able to call for water and then we’d work out ways in which we could just open communication.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, yeah. And just um, I think to put it simply, I mean, brilliant writing and having that as an actor and then just bringing that it’s all to do with the truth, really. And I think remaining to my character as truth and Johnny remaining to Anthony’s truth, that kind of does all the work in itself. I think none of us ever know neither of us ever. We never did anything for the sake of it. If that makes sense.

Jonathan Bailey: And it sort of is by the amazing way that Shondaland and Netflix create spaces where and the crew. It’s the same crew as series one, and there’s so much as much of the part of the Bridgerton family as the cast. And so like when you got Dave Rankin, the grip just going ‘it’s alright Johnny’. You know, and Leo, who’s on Steadicam, who is are unsung heroes of a show like Bridgerton, where actually the crew really, you know, there’s certain sweeping Steadicam shots that this amazing camera operator Leo did that really sell as much as what we’re doing is as what the writing does as well. So it is in those moments and the chemistry when it’s earned, it’s actually, you know, hundreds of people’s work. But just with me and Simone, I think we did develop, you know, this way of doing it, which was quite, which meant that we kept a bit of secret power to ourselves.

Simone Ashley: Yeah, I think that’s the best way to describe it. Yeah, secret power.



I have a question for Golda, Bessie and Polly. This one’s from women’s wear woman’s way in Ireland. While the costumes are amazing for the show. How comfortable are they to actually wear for extended periods and what outfits were your favourite?

Polly Walker: Well, I can’t say that mine were comfortable, I have a massive closet going on. I also had like little white tights that wouldn’t stay up, so I might have looked very elegant, but my tights were like a two year old, you know, with the gusset down by my ankles. So, um yeah, it was. It was all for a good cause.

Bessie Carter: Well, I’ll go just quickly because I was actually very comfortable, unfortunately, and I didn’t have to wear full. I got away with a half corset. I was wigged this year. The first season I actually dyed my red, which I regretted the minute I did because I had to go in every two weeks to get my roots done another hour, for God’s sake. But I was actually fine, but my favourite costume quickly was just basically any handbag I was given because one was like a little pumpkin. One was like a little carrot, one like a jellyfish, one like a jellyfish, but also a lampshade at the same time. So I would just walk around like look doing any work. So I got away very easily.

Golda Rosheuvel: So my costumes, they’re great. They’re amazing. I love them. I am double corseted. I train three times a week. I eat healthily. I drink lots of water because you have to have stamina to wear those costumes so that the recovery days are less difficult because I haven’t died yet. My insides are still intact, but one has to be very careful. Match fit. Yeah, got to be match fit.

Jonathan Bailey: Something amazing about the ball sequences because you’d have a tent because it was so hot, hot to lower the temperature and you just see the silhouette of Golda in this tent in the corner.

Bessie Carter: Like Marge Simpson.

Jonathan Bailey: Yeah, yeah.


Chris, What is it about moving from enemies to lovers that make it such a romantic story?

Chris Van Dusen: You know, enemies to lovers is really probably my most favourite trope of the romance genre, and I think it’s because there’s just there’s all this inherent conflict to mine and the banter that happens between Kate and Anthony all season. I mean, you watch them go toe to toe just about in every scene in the beginning and you’re just taken by it. It’s so fun. You guys are so good at that kind of thing. And it again, it leads to such a satisfying payoff that when we get there, the lovers part, it’s really satisfying.


Johnny, what is it like being a central character in Bridgerton season two?

Jonathan Bailey: I think with Anthony again, when I met Chris for the first time, the big conversation is, you know, how you go forward in a big show like this that promises so many different stories. And with Anthony there, it was clear that there was just so much going on. I’d read the second book and I knew where he was going to get to see the thrill of series one and and and being a character that can support, you know, Phoebe’s love story. You get to, you know, play around with it and be on the inside of those conversations, which feels really creative. And yeah, so it’s a thrill to be able to jump into a romantic sort of male character that we sort of know quite well through literature. But then to be able to sort of really understand, you know, avoidance and toxicity to Anthony that he’s definitely carried around the series one and can and probably will continue to. But yeah, he’s got a troubled past. And um, and that’s been great to explore. And obviously, to me, you know, to see him smile more was always the thing that I look forward to when he gets through meeting Simone’s Kate.


And then my last question is for Luke Thompson and Luke Newton, with Bridgerton now a global phenomenon of the success of season one. Do you feel more pressure or at least the weight of expectation going into making season two?

Luke Thompson: No, personally, I actually feel more relaxed this time round. The reason being that I think when we started off, we didn’t really, you know, the universe of Bridgerton didn’t really exist. So we were sort of like, Okay, is this going to how is this all going to fit together? Whereas now coming back in, we have this world and we just have to dive straight back into it. So it’s actually. And the fact that the response has been so, you know, wholeheartedly supportive and amazing. I think if anything, you sort of think, all right, we’re doing. You know, people are buying into it, so they’re pouring themselves into it. So now we just have to go around and swim in it.

Luke Newton: Yeah, yeah, it’s definitely. I think Jonny said it perfectly earlier that there’s such family dynamic on set, which means that you feel so safe. I remember the first day in season two, like when we met you guys for the first time. It was a massive day. Everyone was together and I was really nervous and I had a couple of lines with you two, and I was like, it was like the back of my throat. And I was like, I can’t even speak. I’m so nervous. It isn’t in the show in the end. So you obviously was there.

Luke Newton: But no, after that day seeing everyone together and and and almost what Luke just touched on, which is like, you go into this fantasy world, so you, you, you start off by being like, this is really overwhelming. This job is massive, and it’s like such a pleasure to be a part of it. But then once you dive in and you’re there every day, the rest of the world you kind of forget about and it’s all you’re so immersed in the world of Bridgerton that you lose yourself. So the pressure’s kind of just fall away and you’re completely with your cast mates and in character majority of the time.

Luke Thompson: And yeah, and I would also say really quickly that another advantage is having a show where there is this sort of constant change at the front on the front line means that every season feels different. So there’s no it’s very difficult sort of compare, which again is very useful. And that like the idea that would be pressure would be if we had to in any way sort of emulate what’s happened before. But there’s something about the structure of the show that completely works against that. So it’s it’s it’s such a gift because we can just constantly redefine it, reinvent it and put new things in it, you know?

Well, thank you so much. That was fantastic, and we’re very excited for season two of Bridgerton. Many great things to come. Thank you.

Chris Van Dusen: Thank you. Thank you.



BRIDGERTON SEASON 2 premieres globally on Netflix on 25th March 2022

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