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Bridgerton Announces Sex Education Star Simone Ashley As New Lead Cast Member For Season 2

Bridgerton Announces Sex Education Star Simone Ashley As New Lead Cast Member For Season 2

The first cast member for Bridgerton season 2 has been announced.

Simone Ashley, 25, has officially been cast as new lead Kate in the Shonda Rhimes Netflix show - the love interest of the second season's starring character: Anthony Bridgerton.

Anthony already appeared in the first instalment of the scandalous series, and is played by Jonathan Bailey, 32.

Meanwhile, the stunning Simone will be making her debut as Kate on the show - based on Julia Quinn's The Viscount Who Loved Me - next season.

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Simone Ashley has been cast as the series' new lead, Kate (Credit: Instagram/ Simone Ashley)
Simone Ashley has been cast as the series' new lead, Kate (Credit: Instagram/ Simone Ashley)

While the character went by the name Kate Sheffield in the book, she has had a name change to Kate Sharma for the show, to reflect the actress' South-Asian background.

The series has been praised for including BAME cast members in high society roles, such as Golda Rosheuvel as Queen Charlotte, Adjoa Andoh as Lady Danbury and Regé-Jean Page as the Duke of Hastings.

Sharing the news on social media, Netflix teased: "Get ready to fall in love with Simone Ashley, who will play Kate in Season 2 of Bridgerton.

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"Kate is a smart, headstrong young woman who suffers no fools - Anthony Bridgerton very much included."

A tweet from the official Bridgerton account, imitating Lady Whistledown, adds: "Quite the juicy bit of gossip, dear readers... This author is certainly looking forward to many a column covering Miss Kate Sharma."


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Simone is no stranger to the small screen, having previously starred in Netflix's Sex Education and ITV's Broadchurch.

And it seems that Julia Quinn is pretty happy with the newest casting.

As it was announced, the author took to Instagram and wrote: "I couldn't dream of a more perfect Kate. I mean, just LOOK at her expression in that first photo!"

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The Bridgerton book series contains eight different books which means the series creator, Chris Van Dusen, and Shonda Rhimes have no shortage of material for upcoming instalments.

While we have no official confirmation of season 2's synopsis, The Viscount Who Loved Me focuses on Anthony's intent to marry a Sheffield (Sharma) daughter.

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Anthony is convinced he should marry for duty, not love, and - as you can imagine - this leads to lots of drama.

While the second season of the Netflix drama will hone in specifically on Anthony's love life, it doesn't mean we've seen the last of Simon Bassett (Regé-Jean Page) and Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor), as they will no doubt pop up while they continue to navigate their now happily married life.

Jonathan Bailey is starring as Anthony Bridgerton (Credit: Netflix)
Jonathan Bailey is starring as Anthony Bridgerton (Credit: Netflix)

Last month, showrunner Van Dusen said: "We have a bunch of new characters we are going to be introducing.

"Anthony is going to have a love interest next season, and I think it's going to be as sweeping and moving and as beautiful as viewers of the first season have come to expect from the show."

At the end of season one, Anthony's clandestine romance with opera singer Siena Rosso (Sabrina Bartlett) comes to an end, meaning he is single and ready to settle down as the next show airs.

"We left him at the end of the first season at a bit of a crossroads," Van Dunsen added. "So I'm looking forward to jumping in and discovering how he fares on the marriage market".

Further teasing what to expect in the next season, the book's author Julia said: "Anthony is going to get it bad.

"Jonathan Bailey played him so well; you still love him, but he needs to be taken down a peg, and he is going to be taken down so many pegs. It's awesome".

Eeeek, we can't wait.

Featured Image Credit: Netflix

Topics: bridgerton, TV News, TV Entertainment, Netflix

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Joanna Freedman

Joanna is a journalist at Tyla with a particular interest in highlighting women's issues and telling inspiring first person stories. She's also their resident foodie, and loves covering exciting new beauty launches, too. Contact her at [email protected]