Bridgerton creator Chris Van Dusen has revealed that, following Rege Jean Page's surprise exit, the show sadly had to say goodbye to another major character in season two.
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Netflix viewers will have a hard time spotting Ruby Stokes, who plays the sixth Bridgerton sibling Francesca, in the new episodes, which drop on Friday as she was only able to film a handful of scenes before leaving the set.
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Unfortunately, the actress could not commit to the Shondaland drama's shooting schedule due to a prior commitment to another Netflix series, upcoming thriller Lockwood & Co. As a result, a significant storyline involving her character in the new season was scrapped.
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Speaking to TV Line, the showrunner explained: "I love Francesca, but we lost her midway through season two. After exhausting all other options, she unfortunately had to come out due to reasons beyond our control."
He added that the 21-year-old actress, who is also known for her roles in the movies Una and Rocks, will hopefully return in the future, saying: "Perhaps season three will be the charm."
The show sadly had to say goodbye to Francesca Bridgerton actress Ruby Stokes (far left)
The good news is that Bridgerton has already been renewed for seasons three and four, so it seems very likely that Ruby will reprise her role. However, her character Francesca does not take centre stage until the sixth book in the Julia Quinn novel series, which is titled When He Was Wicked.
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Meanwhile, Lockwood and Co will see Ruby play a young woman with supernatural gifts who goes to work for a paranormal investigating agency. The series, which also stars The Bay actress Morven Christie and Ordeal By Innocence star Luke Treadaway as well as newcomers Cameron Chapman and Ali Hadji-Heshmati, is based on Jonathan Stroud's book series of the same name.
The eight-part series has not yet been given a release date, but it seems that Netflix subscribers will be able to catch it very soon.
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