‘Bridgerton’ Star Regé-Jean Page Will Not Return for Season 2—And Fans Are Devastated

Dear Bridgerton fans, I have some terrible news: Regé-Jean Page will not be returning to our screens as Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings, in season two

Netflix and Shondaland announced his departure on April 2 in the only way they know how: a letter from Lady Whistledown herself.

“Dear Readers, while all eyes turn to Lord Anthony Bridgerton’s quest to find a Viscountess, we bid adieu to Regé-Jean Page, who so triumphantly played the Duke of Hastings,” the message began. “We’ll miss Simon’s presence onscreen, but he will always be a part of the Bridgerton family. Daphne will remain a devoted wife and sister, helping her brother navigate the upcoming social season and what it has to offer–more intrigue and romance than my readers may be able to bear.”

It sounds like Phoebe Dynevor is still on board as Daphne Bridgerton, the Duchess of Hastings, which is a relief. Or is it now Daphne Basset? Either way, the absence of her costar will be greatly felt by fans. 

While this may come as no surprise to fans of the novels by Julia Quinn—as Lady Whistledown noted, the second installment is heavily focussed on the Bridgerton Viscount, Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey)—it was definitely a shock to fans of the sexy Netflix series. 

“NOOO,” one user tweeted in response to the news. “I can see that word being uttered repeatedly. He was what everyone talked about that got me to watch. Sure, the cast is amazing…the costumes are to die for…and Shonda did an outstanding job, but NOOOOOOO.”

This user is not wrong. While Bridgerton remains one of Netflix’s most successful series to date, there’s no doubt Page was the breakout star. Following its debut, the actor sparked James Bond rumors, hosted Saturday Night Live, and received the most awards nominations of anyone in the cast. Most recently, he scored the series’ first acting win at the NAACP Image Awards, taking home the trophy for outstanding actor in a drama series. 

Here’s how some others took the news.

Still, some users are pointing out that the show is called Bridgerton, not Basset. 

As for Page, the “one-season arc” was one of the reasons he accepted the broody role. “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.”

“One of the things that is different about this [romance] genre is that the audience knows the arc completes,” he continued. “They come in knowing that, so you can tie people in emotional knots because they have that reassurance that we’re going to come out and we’re going to have the marriage and the baby.”

Next for Page is a big project alongside Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans: the Netflix spy adventure, The Gray Man. We know you’ll be watching. 

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