‘Bridgerton’: Did Shonda Rhimes Have a Season 2 Story for Regé-Jean Page?

Some Bridgerton fans were heartbroken to find out Regé-Jean Page won’t be in season 2. Now Shonda Rhimes is giving her reaction to the actor’s decision and whether she had a season 2 story for Simon Basset.

Regé-Jean Page won’t play Simon Basset in ‘Bridgerton’ Season 2

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Season 1 of Bridgerton showed Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) trying to find love during her first season. Most men want her given she’s Queen Charlotte’s (Golda Rosheuvel) favorite. Simon Basset also seems interested in her as they form a friendship.

The rest of the season follows where that friendship goes. Many fans loved the duke and hoped to see him again. But the actor decided not to return after he was offered the chance to play the duke again.

“It’s a one-season arc. It’s going to have a beginning, middle, end—give us a year,” Page told Variety. “[I thought] ‘That’s interesting,’ because then it felt like a limited series. I get to come in, I get to contribute my bit, and then the Bridgerton family rolls on.”

Shonda Rhimes reveals if she had a season 2 story for Regé-Jean Page

REGÉ-JEAN PAGE as SIMON BASSET is sitting a desk and raising his eyebrow in 'Bridgerton'
REGÉ-JEAN PAGE as SIMON BASSET in ‘Bridgerton’ | LIAM DANIEL/NETFLIX © 2020

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Rhimes fell in love with the book series, and that started her plan to adapt it into a show. The producer was able to joke about Page not returning.

“I was really shocked, because usually that happens when I’ve killed off somebody that’s been around for a while,” she told Vanity Fair. Like, we didn’t kill him, he’s still alive!”

However, she wasn’t expecting the big fan reaction to the news. “I don’t know that I expected this much of an explosion, given that every book [in the Bridgerton series] is a different romance,” she said. “What would be the ever-after of this combo? I mean, really: What would Regé-Jean do, you know what I mean? We gave them their happily ever after!”

It looks like if Page did return, there would have been a new plan made for the character. “That was the plan: come and do one season as the duke. Anything else that was extra and wasn’t really the plan when we started wasn’t the plan when we finished,” she said.

Each season of ‘Bridgerton’ will be focused on a different couple

RELATED: ‘Bridgerton’ Season 2: Another Newcomer Added to the Cast as Regé-Jean Page Exits

The Netflix show will continue to follow the book’s format. Season 2 is focused on Lord Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey). Rhimes was asked in the same interview if actors will be given longer contracts to avoid them not coming back.

“I don’t want to talk about people’s contracts, but once again, the concept is that every season, there’s a couple, and that couple is the hot couple that you’re falling in love with, right? And there are eight Bridgertons,” she answered.

“So by the time you get to [prepubescent] Hyacinth—oh, dear God, she’ll be grown up by then,” the producer continued. “Obviously we’re not going to match up a child!—we’ll grow Hyacinth up and you’ll see her story too.”

It looks like the show will be sticking to its original plan. Although writers seem open to their past, popular couples doing appearances in the future.