When Nicola Coughlan announced that “bridgeton” Season 3 will be Follow Colin Bridgerton (Luke Newton) and Penelope Fetherington’s love storyviewers can’t help but wonder why the show strayed from the Julia Quinn book on which it was based.
Although the first two seasons Netflix Bestsellers follow – first focusing on Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Denver), then Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey), and the third book is about Benny Dickett’s.Jess Brownell, who was new showrunner when Chris Van Dusen quits, shares the reasoning exclusively type.
“I really feel like it’s Colin and Penelope time. Because we’ve been watching these two actors on screen since Season 1, we’ve made some investments in them. We know who they are. ,”she says. “I think, especially last season, there were some tense moments between them, like Colin got to the point where he almost realized Penelope had feelings for him but didn’t quite. We don’t want to be here. Treading water on this dynamic, but trying to push it into their season. It’s really the perfect time to kick off.”
For more on the new season and how far the show will deviate from the original in other ways, read the full Q&A below:
Do you think changing the order will change the larger picture element and move away from the book?
Well, we’re already a little different from the books because we’re an ensemble show. The books really focus on one romantic couple at a time, and maybe the siblings have some cameos here and there, but they don’t have the full story. That way, even if we reverse the order of the books, I think all the people you want to see — Benedict, he’s the third book, he’s going to be a big part of season 3.
We know Anthony and Kate will be back. Will they be a big part of next season? What about Daphne?
We want to keep seeing all of our Bridgetton siblings. We feel like those moments as a family together are what this show is really about and what makes us all, I think, want to be Bridgetton. So yes, you’re definitely going to see Daphne and Anthony and Kate – how many, I don’t want to say yet, but you have to tune in.
Have you guys discussed whether you’re going back to Benedict, or going straight to Eloise next season?
So, you know, I think Shonda Rhimes has publicly stated before that she wants to have eight seasons. We want to be able to tell the love story of each sibling who will always be there every season.
Romance and sex are very different in season 1 and season 2. Since season 1 was so tense, season 2 was more of a slow burn. What’s your take on the Season 3 comparison?
I think seasons 1 and 2, our male lead had a lot of dark pasts – Simon and his dad and Anthony losing his dad. Obviously Colin lost the same dad, but I think Colin and Peng are the characters that bring a lot of comedy to the show. So I think we’re going to play a lot this season. But I wanted to balance it out with quite a bit of sexiness and romance. I think it’s very important to the show. We’ll have the opportunity to get to know them more deeply and push them into more serious aspects and see what it’s like, so you’ll see new new levels.
Can you talk about the topics you will be working with Pen and Colin on?
I don’t want to say too much, but in general, we’re playing with the fact that this season is about two characters coming out of the shadows. Colin, as a third son who is a bit behind the scenes, and Penelope as Mrs. Whistledown, live in this dual identity and in public, really live on the wall. So watching these two step into the sun and find each other will be very rewarding.
How did you transition into the role of show host?
I mean, it’s definitely a learning curve. This is my first time doing this, but it’s the best environment. I have been working at Shondaland for 13 or 14 years. Chris Van Dusen and I showed up and worked together for over a decade, and he was so supportive, it was amazing. Shonda and Betsy Beers and the whole Shondaland team really held my hand when I needed it along the way. So I feel very supportive. I’ve been watching this show since season 1 and it’s my dream show. If I wasn’t working, this would be at the top of my list of shows I would watch. So I’m so excited to play that role in this particular show.
What is the biggest challenge?
I think I might not have been prepared for the level of outreach the fans had. I’ve always enjoyed working behind the scenes, and when it was announced that I was stepping in, I became more visible, so people were reaching out, but I was excited about it. Honestly, they’re very excited and it’s an honor to be working on something that people care so much about.
As such, Pen’s weight and weight loss are mentioned several times throughout the book, in part in the form of inner monologues. Is that something you would touch?
We think Penelope is beautiful, and I don’t think that’s really part of her story. I think her being a wallflower on our show is more about her level of confidence than her looks. So I think it’s more of what we’re playing this season.
I’m sure there’s some pressure to keep the ending the same when adapting a book, especially a romance, but we’ve seen this lead to a lack of LGBTQ+ representation. Is this your problem to solve?
Right now, I’m really so focused on Pen and Colin and how we’re rolling them out that my mind goes through it every day, but maybe we can talk about that at a later date.
This interview has been edited and condensed.