Today brings exciting news for Bridgerton's millions of fans: an intriguing prequel series is in the pipeline.
The spin-off series will explore the origins of Queen Charlotte, the fan favourite character played by Golda Rosheuvel in the main Bridgerton series.
Queen Charlotte does not appear in the original novels by Julia Quinn – she was created especially for the Netflix series – so writer Shonda Rhimes will have plenty of room for manoeuvre in crafting her backstory.
In addition to introducing the young Queen Charlotte, the spin-off series will also explore the backstories of young Violet Bridgerton and Lady Danbury, the characters played in Bridgerton by Ruth Gemmell and Adjoa Andoh.
Deadline reports that Netflix has also announced that Jess Brownell will serve as showrunner for seasons three and four of Bridgerton, which have already been ordered following the show's enormously successful launch. Chris Van Dusen served as showrunner on season one and is also overseeing the eagerly anticipated second season. Rhimes will oversee the Queen Charlotte spin-off series.
"Many viewers had never known the story of Queen Charlotte before Bridgerton brought her to the world, and I’m thrilled this new series will further expand her story and the world of Bridgerton," said Netflix's head of global TV, Bela Bajaria.
"Shonda and her team are thoughtfully building out the Bridgerton universe so they can keep delivering for the fans with the same quality and style they love," Bajaria continued. "And by planning and prepping all the upcoming seasons now, we also hope to keep up a pace that will keep even the most insatiable viewers totally fulfilled."
Rhimes added: "As we continue to expand the world of Bridgerton, we now have the opportunity to devote even more of the Shondaland fold to the Bridgerton-verse. We’ve worked with Jess Brownell for over a decade and have long wanted to find the right project to place in her hands. When it came time to pass the baton, I knew this unique voice was vital to the future of the show."
So, there we have it: lots of good news for Bridgerton fans to help compensate for Regé-Jean Page's devastating departure.