Bridgerton Is Getting A Royal Spinoff, So Prepare For Shonda Rhimes' Bridgerton-Verse
Bridgerton became a smash hit for Netflix almost immediately when it premiered on Christmas Day in 2020, and the buzz still hasn't died down nearly five months after viewers met the likes of Phoebe Dynevor's Daphne, Regé-Jean Page's Simon, and of course Golda Rosheuvel's Queen Charlotte, among other unforgettable characters. The show was renewed for three more seasons after just the one became such a huge hit (although without one star), and now a royal spinoff is on the way to officially establish a "Bridgerton-verse" courtesy of Shonda Rhimes' Shondaland.
Netflix has announced the plan for a spinoff that will tell the origin story of Queen Charlotte, establishing how she became the person she was by the time Bridgerton picked up with her as an often aloof monarch secretly struggling with her husband's mental state. That said, while the spinoff is centered on young Queen Charlotte's rise and love life, it will also tell the origin stories of two other memorable Bridgerton characters: Violet Bridgerton and Lady Danbury, played on Bridgerton by Ruth Gemmell and Adjoa Andoh, respectively.
This spinoff is set to be a limited series, so viewers shouldn't count on multiple seasons of young Queen Charlotte, Violet Bridgerton, and Lady Danbury, and no episode count has been revealed at the time of writing, but Bridgerton executive producer and TV legend Shonda Rhimes is already set to write the series and executive produce. As for the title of the spinoff, that remains to be seen, but if the show is centered more on Charlotte than Violet, then it's entirely possible that the title won't have "Bridgerton" in it at all.
Shonda Rhimes commented on the order for the new show, as well as the renewals for Bridgerton through Season 4, in a statement:
Shondaland is of course Shonda Rhimes' production company that was behind TV mega-hits like Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder before she made the move to Netflix for Bridgerton. The official establishment of a multi-show Bridgerton-verse means that the shared universe will expand beyond Bridgerton simply devoting each season to different characters as different chapters in the same larger story. And if Queen Charlotte, Violet Bridgerton, and Lady Danbury can get a spinoff, who else? Other than Regé-Jean Page, that is.
One downside to the spinoff focusing on these characters in their younger days is that the actresses who brought them to life in Bridgerton Season 1 presumably won't appear in the series, unless it is told via flashbacks, there is a flash-forward, or they take over narrating duties from the venerable Julie Andrews. They will presumably all return for the next seasons of Bridgerton, however. Creator Chris Van Dusen will remain on board Bridgerton as showrunner through the end of Season 2, with 13-year Shondaland veteran writer/producer Jess Brownell taking over as showrunner for Seasons 3 and 4.
For now, you can watch and rewatch the full first season of Bridgerton on Netflix now. Season 2 is in production, but a premiere date may be a ways off. If you're ready for some non-Bridgerton viewing options, you can find more of what has already released and what's to come on our 2021 Netflix premiere schedule.
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Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.
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