Bridgerton season 3: Everything we know so far about the Netflix series return

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(Image credit: Netflix)

Bridgerton season 3 filming is underway as the focus shifts to Nicola Coughlan’s Penelope Featherington and her romance with the next Bridgerton sibling – Luke Newton’s Colin. The latest episodes will be inspired by Julia Quinn’s fourth novel Romancing Mr. Bridgerton. 

However, a new synopsis teases that not everything will go smoothly for the pair after Colin’s brutal remarks about his close friend at the end of season 2. He was overheard telling his friends how he would “never dream” of courting her, breaking Penelope’s heart. Add into the mix that Eloise Bridgerton has just discovered her best friend is Lady Whistledown, it looks like we’ve got a dramatic season ahead. 

To keep you up to date with everything known about Bridgerton season 3, we’ve rounded up all of the latest news about story details, casting, and filming updates. We’ve also taken our best guess at when the show may be released on Netflix. Let the scandal begin…

Bridgerton season 3 release dateNetflix has not yet announced a Bridgerton season 3 release date. However, we’re one step closer now cameras have officially started rolling on the new season. This was confirmed in a video from Netflix, which showed the majority of cast members back on set. 

To get an idea about when the episodes might make it to Netflix, let’s consider previous seasons’ schedules. Bridgerton’s first season started filming in July 2019, wrapped in late February 2020, and was released in December 2020. The second season started production in March 2021, and only finished filming in November 2021 due to COVID-induced delays to filming. That season was released in March 2022. Essentially, both seasons took nearish a year from filming to release, which could put the Bridgerton season 3 release date in summer 2023.

Bridgerton season 3 plot

(Image credit: NETFLIX)Bridgerton is based on Julia Quinn’s series of eight books, following each of the eight siblings as they find love. Though the sensible guess would be that the Bridgerton season 3 plot will tell the story of the third book in the series, new showrunner Jess Brownell confirmed in an interview with Variety (opens in new tab) that season 3 is skipping ahead to book 4 and focusing on Colin and Penelope’s love story.

Bridgerton season 2 set up the romantic relationship between Penelope Featherington (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton), which forms the premise of the fourth book in the romance book series. Their storyline ended in a pretty difficult position in season 2 after Penelope overheard Colin mocking the idea of a romance with her to his friends.

“I really feel like it’s Colin and Penelope’s time. Because we’ve been watching both of these actors on our screens since season 1, we’ve already invested in them a little bit. We know who they are as people,” Brownell explained. “Instead of treading water on that dynamic, we wanted to push it into their season. It really felt like the perfect moment to tee it up.”

She added: “I think Shonda Rhimes has said publicly before that she wants to have eight seasons. We hope to get to tell every sibling’s love story and they will always be in each season.”

Alongside the news the show has begun filming, Netflix has also released a juicy synopsis for season 3. Per Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab), this reads: “Bridgerton is back for its third season and finds Penelope Featherington has finally given up on her long-held crush on Colin Bridgerton after hearing his disparaging words about her last season. She has, however, decided it’s time to take a husband, preferably one who will provide her with enough independence to continue her double life as Lady Whistledown, far away from her mother and sisters. But lacking in confidence, Penelope’s attempts on the marriage mart fail spectacularly.”

The synopsis continues: “Meanwhile, Colin has returned from his summer travels with a new look and a serious sense of swagger. But he’s disheartened to realize that Penelope, the one person who always appreciated him as he was, is giving him the cold shoulder. Eager to win back her friendship, Colin offers to mentor Penelope in the ways of confidence to help her find a husband this season. But when his lessons start working a little too well, Colin must grapple with whether his feelings for Penelope are truly just friendly. Complicating matters for Penelope is her rift with Eloise, who has found a new friend in a very unlikely place, while Penelope’s growing presence in the ton makes it all the more difficult to keep her Lady Whistledown alter ego a secret.”

Bridgerton season 3 cast

(Image credit: NETFLIX)There’s been some casting shake-ups in Bridgerton season 3. Netflix has announced Francesca Bridgerton has been recast as original star Ruby Stokes had to leave the show. This came after being cast as the lead in Netflix series Lockwood & Co. She’s been replaced by Anatomy of a Scandal and Eternals star Hannah Dodd.

So far, no new cast exits have been confirmed. After Regé-Jean Page left his role as the Duke in the aftermath of season one, many were wondering if this set a new precedent for characters leaving after their main series. Luckily, it seems Bridgerton season 3 will be bucking the curve, with both Anthony (Jonathan Bailey) and the bane of his existence Kate Bridgerton (Simone Ashley) tipped to return.

Speaking to Deadline (opens in new tab), Ashley said: “We’re going to be back!” She continued: “Kate and Anthony are just getting started. In season two, there was a lot of push and pull between Kate and Anthony, there were complications with the family, and then they find each other towards the end. I think everything is just starting.”

Bailey has also shared his hopes about what the new season could mean for his character. Speaking to The Wrap (opens in new tab), he said: “I just can’t wait for them to have a baby. Baby Edmund, I think, is the first that’s to come if it’s according to the books, but maybe they’ll have octuplets. Maybe they’ll flip it on its head.”

New showrunner Jess Brownell told Variety (opens in new tab) that Benedict Bridgerton (Luke Thompson) will be playing a big part in the new season. She also confirmed that we will “definitely be seeing Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor),” though she neglected to say how much.

There is one confirmed exit: showrunner Chris Van Dusen is stepping down as the show’s main boss. He’ll still be involved as a producer, with Brownell taking over. She’s been a writer and producer on Bridgerton so far, and was also involved in Shondaland Netflix show Inventing Anna.

Duke of Hastings star Page also confirmed he was definitely not reprising his role on the show in an update on Instagram. Alongside a snap of him and Bailey, he wrote (opens in new tab): “The boys are back in town. (No, I’m not going back to the show btw – the papers made that one up.)”

When Bridgerton season 3 began filming, the final casting announcements were made. Stay Close actor Daniel Francis will play Marcus Anderson, who is a charismatic new member of the ton. The Crown star Sam Phillips plays Lord Debling, a lord with some unusual interests. While James Phoon will play the dim-witted Harry Dankworth.

While we wait for more information on Bridgerton season 3, why not check out our list of best Netflix shows to watch right.

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering TV and film for the Total Film and SFX sections online. I previously worked as a Senior Showbiz Reporter and SEO TV reporter at Express Online for three years. I’ve also written for The Resident magazines and Amateur Photographer, before specializing in entertainment.

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