It’s official: We’ve seen the last of the Duke of Hastings on Bridgerton.
Netflix (via Lady Whistledown) announced Friday that Regé-Jean Page will not be returning as Simon Basset in Season 2. The move was widely expected considering Season 2 will take a literal and figurative page from Julia Quinn’s second book and center on Lord Anthony Bridgerton’s (Jonathan Bailey) quest for a bride. (Spoiler Alert: His main Season 2 squeeze has been cast!)
“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,” a tweet from Lady W read. “We’ll miss Simon’s presence onscreen, but he will always be a part of the Bridgerton family.”
However, Page’s leading lady, Phoebe Dynevor, will be back. “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,” the message continued.
In an interview with Variety, Page confirmed that his Bridgerton commitment was for one season only. “One of the things that is different about this [romance] genre is that the audience knows the arc completes,” he said. “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.”
During an appearance on the Today show in January, showrunner Chris Van Dusen hedged when asked if Page and Dynevor would be involved in Season 2. “I hope so,” he said. “They are the Duke and Duchess now, but in my mind they will always be Bridgertons, and I think they will always be a part of the show.”
Your Grace, it has been a pleasure. 💜🐝 pic.twitter.com/kX1nIG8pz7
— Bridgerton (@bridgerton) April 2, 2021