As we mentioned, Bridgerton is based on a series and each novel centers on a different sibling and their love life. Season One was all about Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and her man, Simon, and was based on the first novel The Duke and I.
The second season is placing the attention on Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey) and his new love interest, Kate Sharma (Simone Ashley), as per the second book The Viscount Who Loved Me.
In the second novel, Daphne and Simon aren't really mentioned all that much. However, the series shows a great deal more of its side characters than the books, so Shonda did ask Regé-Jean to return - an offer he declined, much to our dismay.
"Rightfully, he said, 'I signed up to do this one lovely story, this closed-ended storyline. I’m good!'" she told Variety. "And I don't blame him for that. I think that he was really smart to leave the perfection as the perfection."
For his part, the actor revealed he'd be moving on to other projects and felt there was "value" in completing the character's story.
"I have nothing but excitement for Bridgerton continuing to steam train off and conquer the globe," he said. "But there is also value in completing these arcs and sticking the landing."
The news was confirmed to fans in the Bridgerton way; with a letter from Lady Whistledown. Shared to the show's social media pages, the note revealed he would be moving on.
"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," it continued. "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."
Our sincere apologies to everyone who wanted to see Simon lick another spoon. But, from what we've heard, Season 2 will still live up to the hype!
Season 1 of Bridgerton is streaming on Netflix now. Season 2 is due to premiere on March 25, 2022.