The superstar producer behind Grey’s Anatomy, How to Get Away With Murder and Scandal now turns her attention to Regency-era London for a stylish new romantic drama.
This is the first series Shonda Rhimes has spearheaded for Netflix and it’s one of the service’s most anticipated projects of the year, due to drop on Christmas Day.
Based on the romance novels by Julia Quinn, the show follows Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor), the eldest daughter of a powerful family, as she attempts to find a husband.
After becoming a target of Lady Whistledown’s scandal sheet, she crosses paths with the rebellious Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page) and they hatch a plan to protect her reputation.
Bridgerton cast members glimpsed in the recently revealed full-length Bridgerton trailer include Dynevor and Page, as well as Derry Girls star Nicola Coughlan, Line of Duty‘s Polly Walker and W1A’s Jonathan Bailey.
Read on for everything we know so far about Bridgerton.
Bridgerton’s Netflix release date and time
It’s now been confirmed the series will launch on Netflix on 25th December – so you’ll be able to enjoy all the drama from Christmas Day 2020 onwards.
In the UK, the drama will go live on Netflix at 8am.
Who is in the cast of Bridgerton?
There is a massive ensemble cast on board for this.
Phoebe Dynevor plays Daphne Bridgerton, the young debutante set to join the marriage mart. Regé-Jean Page plays Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings who finds himself the primary topic of conversation in the town, but has zero interest in his title or taking a wife.
Golda Rosheuvel (Silent Witness) will star as Queen Charlotte, a tastemaker and chief gossip of London society. Jonathan Bailey (W1A) plays Anthony Bridgerton, the eldest sibling and head of the family since the death of his father.
Luke Newton stars as Colin Bridgerton, a good-natured young man who becomes infatuated with a young woman who has newly arrived to London. Claudia Jessie (Vanity Fair) plays Eloise Bridgerton, the brazen and rebellious sibling who believes she’s destined for something greater than marriage.
Nicola Coughlan plays Penelope Featherington, a young girl with a sharp wit and a kind heart who has been born into a family that doesn’t understand her. Ruby Barker plays Marina Thompson, who has been sent from the country to live with her cousins, the Featheringtons.
Sabrina Bartlett plays Siena Rosso, a captivating opera singer who is having a secret affair with a prominent lord. Ruth Gemmell (Penny Dreadful) plays Lady Violet Bridgerton, the matriarch of the central family who wants all of her children to marry for love.
Adjoa Andoh plays Lady Danbury, a dowager who runs the town. Polly Walker plays Lady Portia Featherington, an ambitious mother who is determined to shop her daughters out to the most impressive suitors.
Luke Thompson will play Benedict Bridgerton, the second eldest of the siblings, who hopes to turn his artistic hobby into a career. Will Tilson stars as Gregory Bridgerton, a “terror with a heart of gold”, who is constantly teasing his sister, Hyacinth.
Florence Hunt will play Hyacinth Bridgerton, the youngest Bridgerton sibling who is dying to follow in her sisters’ footsteps and take part in the marriage mart. Ruby Stokes will star as Francesca Bridgerton, the most reserved of the siblings, who is careful with her words and has a sly sense of humour.
Ben Miller will play Lord Featherington, the lecherous lord who is seen as “a bit of a joke” in London high society. Bessie Carter plays Prudence Featherington, the eldest female in the family, who is enduring her third season on the marriage mart.
Harriet Cains plays Philipa Featherington, the middle Featherington child, who is hellbent on finding herself a husband. Martins Imhangbe plays Will Mondrich, an up-and-coming boxer who climbs London’s social hierarchy due to his newfound celebrity.
Lorraine Ashbourne plays Mrs Varley, the Featherington Housekeeper. And last – but by absolutely no means least – iconic Mary Poppins and Sound of Music star Julie Andrews provides the voice of narrator Lady Whistledown.
What is Bridgerton about?
Netflix’s official synopsis for the series reads: “Bridgerton follows Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor), the eldest daughter of the powerful Bridgerton family as she makes her debut onto Regency London’s competitive marriage market.
“Hoping to follow in her parent’s footsteps and find a match sparked by true love, Daphne’s prospects initially seem to be unrivaled. But as her older brother begins to rule out her potential suitors, the high society scandal sheet written by the mysterious Lady Whistledown casts aspersions on Daphne.
“Enter the highly desirable and rebellious Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page), committed bachelor and the catch of the season for the debutantes’ mamas. Despite proclaiming that they want nothing the other has to offer, their attraction is undeniable and sparks fly as they find themselves engaged in an increasing battle of wits while navigating society’s expectations for their future.”
Is Netflix’s Bridgerton different from the novels?
Season one of Bridgerton is mostly based on the first novel in Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series, titled “The Duke and I” – which focuses on the story of Daphne Bridgerton and Simon Basset.
However, the drama borrows certain details from later novels in the series, while other plot points and characters are completely new additions. Most prominently, the Netflix drama introduces Queen Charlotte (Golda Rosheuvel) into the story as the gossip-obsessed royal presiding over high society.
Bridgerton’s producer Shonda Rhimes says: “You can come to this series having never read a single Bridgerton book or never having even heard of the Bridgerton novels and you will be fully immersed in the world, or you could come to this having read every last one of those books a million times, have dog-eared pages and be obsessed and still find new things to see.”
Is there a trailer for Bridgerton?
The initial teaser trailer for Bridgerton dropped in November, giving Netflix subscribers a first taste of what the show has in store.
A full-length trailer dropped the following month, which gives a more detailed overview of the plot, revolving around Daphne Bridgerton and her rebellious flame, the Duke of Hastings.
“We could pretend to form an attachment… every presumptuous mother in town will leave me alone and every suitor will be looking at you,” the Duke tells Daphne.
But her brother does not approve of this scheme. Watch the drama unfold below:
Bridgerton arrives on Netflix on 25th December 2020. You can order the Bridgerton novels on Amazon. Looking for something else to watch? Check out our guide to the best TV series on Netflix and best movies on Netflix, or visit our TV Guide