Bad news, Bridgerton fans – production on season 2 has been halted, again – for the second time in the span of a week. As of now, the halt is indefinite, with no set end date in sight for production to resume.
The halt comes after a second known person in a week from the Bridgerton cast and crew tested positive for COVID-19. The series is currently filming it’s second season in the UK, where the Delta variant of COVID-19 is currently seeing a surge in the population. After the first person on the crew tested positive, production was put on pause for 24 hours, while the risk was assessed.
Bridgerton is the latest hit to come from Shondaland, the production company founded by Shonda Rhimes, creator of hits such as Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away With Murder. The producers at Shondaland, as well as those at Netflix, are planning to wait until it is safe to resume production of season two of the Bridgerton series.
Despite all that’s going on, there hasn’t been much comment from the representatives at Netflix. Fans are eager to hear more about when they can expect to see the next installment of the Bridgerton series, but it’s likely the privacy of those currently testing positive for the virus is being protected.
Delta variant in the UK
The UK is one place where the Delta variant of COVID-19 is spreading rapidly. Recently, Americans have been discouraged from traveling to the UK out of caution for bringing the Delta variant to the States.
The UK is currently sitting at a Level 4 (the highest warning level) for the Delta variant of COVID-19. Despite the danger, things recently started opening up more in the UK, with reduced regulations on businesses and social gatherings. It’s likely this could have contributed to the cause of the recent uptake in positive COVID tests.
These variants are tricky because it seems the current COVID vaccinations available may not protect against them.
Who tested positive?
It seems that the first person to test positive on the Bridgerton set was a member of the crew. This was the positive test that caused the initial twenty-four-hour shutdown of production, which was likely in order to quickly test other members of the crew and cast to see who else had been exposed. Since production resumed so (relatively) quickly, many have speculated that the person who tested positive was likely a crew member.
However, the second halt in production has sparked even more conversation & speculation. It’s possible that having two positive tests come back so closely together is what caused the long pause, as perhaps the cast & crew are being encouraged to isolate and repeatedly get tested before production can safely resume.
It’s also possible the long pause may be due to the second person infected being someone production can’t resume without. This would likely mean that someone is a part of the cast, whose presence is absolutely necessary for filming to resume. Since big productions like this are often scheduled pretty tightly, it’s likely the showrunners are reworking the schedule in a way that is timely and safe for all.
We do know that those who tested positive are isolating and taking care of their health, which is of course the most important thing.
All of this discussion is due to the massive popularity of the Bridgerton series. The joint Netflix and Shondaland production is based on the popular romance novel series by author Julia Quinn. Her books, of which there are nine in the Bridgerton series, follow each Bridgerton sibling as they find love in Regency-era England.
Romance in the Regency era is a premise that pretty much secures instant success, with the popularity of movies like Pride and Prejudice and Emma, both based on Jane Austen novels of the same name. The allure of this subgenre has endured over time, and Bridgerton offers modern audiences a sex-positive take on the genre that features a cast more reflective of the world we live in.
The Bridgerton series is one of Netflix’s biggest original releases to date, and it’s garnered plenty of positive critical attention as well. This year, the series has twelve Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series, a Lead Actor nom for Regé Jean-Page, and a Voiceover nom for Julie Andrews, who voices Lady Whistledown.
Although Jean-Page won’t be returning for season 2, fans are looking forward to watching Anthony Bridgerton find love with a newcomer named Kate. The series has been renewed through four seasons, so fans shouldn’t worry too much about their favorite Regency romance returning, even if they do have to wait a while.