This Is Where You Know The Cast Of Bridgerton Season 2 From

The Shondaland-produced Regency-era drama, "Bridgerton," was an unexpected smash. The show's first season dropped on Netflix on December 25, 2020, and it became a smashing success almost overnight. According to Golda Rosheuvel, the cast, crew, and producers had "no idea" that their "little show" was going to be so well received. However, the series ended up being an enormous hit, with 82 million subscribers streaming it in its first 28 days — making it "Netflix's fifth biggest original series to date," according to TVLine.

Of course, the success of Season 1 meant greenlighting a second season was a no-brainer for Netflix, with the announcement coming mere weeks after the show first dropped. The second season of "Bridgerton," which arrived on Netflix March 25, will see the return of fan-favorite cast members like Rosheuvel, Phoebe Dynevor, and Nicola Coughlin. However, because of the generational nature of the series — meaning each season focuses on a different Bridgerton sibling — there's a slew of fresh faces joining the show, too. "I think the beauty of the show is that every season is going to be so different. There's going to be a different love story, and it's going to be a completely new sort of storyline," Dynevor explained on Good Morning America.

Among the new cast members are Simone Ashley and Charithra Chandran, who play love interests for Viscount Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey), who is the focus of Season 2. But just who else is a part of the "Bridgerton" Season 2 cast? 

Jonathan Bailey is making Anthony Bridgerton shine in Season 2

Jonathan Bailey is back playing Viscount Anthony Bridgerton in Season 2. Bailey originally auditioned to play Regé-Jean Page's character, the Duke of Hastings, but found that the eldest Bridgerton sibling was a better fit. He loves that Anthony is more complex than what meets the eye. "To me, he feels like a good-hearted person dressed in an antagonist's clothing," he told Vogue.

Anthony became the patriarch of the Bridgerton family after his father, Edmund, died. Initially, Anthony was hesitant to take on all the responsibility that came with the title, but he stepped up in Season 1 to help his younger sister, Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor), find a husband. Even though he didn't always get it right (remember Nigel Berbrooke?), love and loyalty always dictated Anthony's decisions. Season 2 gives the British actor another chance to shine, as viewers watch Anthony search for a love match of his own. However, Bailey revealed to GQ that it won't be easy, as the series will address some of the character's more "toxic" behavior.

Bailey was already a well-known actor before he scored his role in the Shondaland period drama, having spent the better part of the past two decades on the stage or on the screen. He's best known for his roles in the crime drama "Broadchurch," the comedy-drama "Crashing," and the political action thriller "Jack Ryan."

Fresh-faced Oxford grad Charithra Chandran is causing a stir on screen

British-Indian actor Charithra Chandran is a new addition to the cast of "Bridgerton." Chandran plays Edwina Sharma, a debutante coming out in London (like Daphne did the season before). "While she may be young and naïve, she also knows what she wants: a true love match," revealed Shondaland, per Instagram. Edwina may find a promising connection sooner than she expects, catching the eye of Anthony Bridgerton within the first few episodes — although, as with all Regency romance, there's bound to be a twist.

Fans of the "Alex Rider" franchise will recognize Chandran, who took on the role of Sabina Pleasance in the British spy thriller's second season. As a freshly minted Oxford graduate, this was her first acting credit (and biggest before "Bridgerton"). "I'm very lucky to have been able to do two amazing projects so early on in my career," she gushed to WION. Chandran revealed that she turned down a more stable career to pursue acting, but said she's "never been happier" than she is now. "Sometimes I have pinch-me moments where I can't believe that this is what I get to do every day," she added.

Though Chandran has seen a lot of success, she's also opened up about the pressure she feels as a minority actor. "When you are a minority, you invariably feel the weight of representing your entire community. That's not imposed by anyone — but it's something I feel," she told Metro.

Simone Ashley is already a Netflix star

"Bridgerton" is a period drama any actor would want to be a part of, not just because of its incredible ratings, but because of the producers' attitudes to colorblind casting. "I didn't really watch period dramas much [while growing up] because I felt like I couldn't relate to them, maybe because I couldn't see myself within one," Simone Ashley told Glamour. "And then Bridgerton came along" and, as the actor put it, the show's "representation matters."

Ashley joined the cast for Season 2, taking on the role of Kate Sharma, Edwina's older sister. Kate is under the impression that Anthony Bridgerton is nothing more than a disreputable rake. She does everything she can to put a damper on his romantic connection with Edwina — only to find herself growing closer to the viscount instead. Before long, a love-triangle begins to form and both she and her sister find themselves vying for Anthony's affections.

If you're trying to put your finger on where you recognize the British actor from, you probably know her as Olivia Hanan from Netflix's popular comedy-drama series "Sex Education." She started acting professionally in 2016, citing musicals as her "window into the performing arts," per People. Perhaps she'll nab a musical role one day, but for now, Ashley's credits are full of guest appearances on British shows like "Casualty," "Doctors," and "Broadchurch." In 2020, Ashley also nabbed a three-episode arc on the psychological thriller, "The Sister," directed by Niall MacCormick.

Shelley Conn swapped her detective badge for a ball gown

British actor Shelley Conn has a long list of television credits under her belt. TV buffs might recognize her as the trauma surgeon Elisabeth Shannon from Fox's sci-fi series, "Terra Nova," which originally aired in 2013. The show was executive produced by Steven Spielberg and featured a stacked cast that included the likes of Jason O'Mara ("Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."), Christine Adams ("Black Lightning"), and Naomi Scott ("Charlie's Angels"). However, despite the names behind and in front of the camera, it was canceled after only thirteen episodes.

After "Terra Nova," Conn went on to guest-star in series like "Silent Witness" and "24: Live Another Day." She is perhaps best known for playing Detective Inspector Vanessa Harmon in the British thriller series "Liar," a role she held from 2017 to 2020. However, the actor has now swapped out her detective badge for a ball gown in "Bridgerton." Conn rounds out the Sharma family, playing Kate and Edwina's widowed mother, Mary. 

According to Shondaland, Lady Mary joins the series with a history of family scandal, and now that she's returned to London, "she's forced to endure the scrutiny of the ton yet again." Conn's co-star, Charithra Chandran, told Entertainment Weekly that Mary's focus is on protecting her daughters and that — while "Bridgerton" is about romance — familial love is also front and center this season. "No matter what happens, [this family] will always choose each other," she said.

Rupert Young's acting background is basically a list of period dramas

Nearly all the characters in the "Bridgerton" television series come from Julia Quinn's book series — although some of them have been adapted through "color-conscious casting." Rupert Young's character, Jack, is a rare exception. He's a completely new personality and is not derived from the book series, created solely for the television show, Deadline reported. According to a post on Shondaland's Instagram page, this new, single-name character has a mysterious backstory and a connection to one of the most noble families in the ton — how intriguing!

While the "Bridgerton" team might not be giving much away about this new character, we do know that Young's acting background makes him a great addition to the cast. The British star has an array of credits in film, television, and stage productions, and he's spent years acting in period dramas. In fact, you could say it's his speciality. 

From "The White Queen" to "Foyle's War" to "Merlin," Young knows his way around a historical drama. Viewers may know him best from his role in "Merlin," a fantasy-adventure drama set in the middle ages. Playing Sir Leon, one of Arthur's most trusted knights, was an experience Young will cherish forever. "I remember one of the first days we were all together, riding into this castle with chain mail and cloaks and all of that, just looking 'round and going, 'This is really cool,'" he recalled to the Los Angeles Times (via Hypable).

Bridgerton wasn't Phoebe Dynevor's first acting job

"Bridgerton" darling Phoebe Dynevor is returning for the second season. Dynevor plays the eldest Bridgerton daughter, Daphne, whose love story was the focus of Season 1. After a few twists and turns, she made a genuine love match with Simon Basset, the dreamy Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page). Daphne and Simon won't be front and center for Season 2, however, since the show's focus has shifted to Anthony Bridgerton, and Page has since exited the series. However, Dynevor is excited about the new love story. It is "so exciting to watch as an outsider ... well as an insider as well, but from the outside," she told Good Morning America.

The actor, who is the daughter of British TV stars Sally and Tim Dynevor, got her start in the school drama "Waterloo Road." Dynevor was a series regular, and played troubled schoolgirl Siobhan Mailey from 2009 to 2010. Outside of the ton, she's also known for her recurring roles in "Dickensian" and "Younger." In 2017, she nabbed a main role in the crime comedy-drama "Snatch" alongside "Harry Potter" star Rupert Grint and "Emily in Paris" actor Lucien Laviscount. Of course, all of this experience just paved the way for Dynevor to land her biggest role to date in "Bridgerton." 

"I've never worked so hard in my life," she told You Magazine, noting her "crazy schedule" meant she was often working "six days a week and [doing] loads of night shoots."

Golda Rosheuvel has an impressive theater background

Just as she picked out Daphne Bridgerton last season, Queen Charlotte (Golda Rosheuvel) is back to choose the diamond of the debutantes this season. Like Rupert Young's Jack, Queen Charlotte is a character who didn't exist in the books. However, she's become an integral part of the series — and not just for picking the belle of the ball, but in perpetuating the Lady Whistledown storyline, too.

Rosheuvel may be best known as the gossip-loving queen in the Netflix period drama, but the actor has decades of credits under her belt, having appeared on both the silver screen and the stage, as well as the small screen. The Guyanese-British actor is known for playing the Shadout Mapes from "Dune," Jenni the midwife from "Eastenders," and the lesbian version of Othello from the 2018 production and reimagining of the classic Shakespeare play of the same name. 

The latter character, Othello, has traditionally been played by male actors, but by flipping this gender role on its head, Rosheuvel and director Gemma Bodinetz made a powerful statement. "Some men have a terrible fear of women, particularly powerful women. They would prefer not to see change, and this Othello is part of change," Rosheuvel told The Guardian. Some of Rosheuvel's other theater credits include "Macbeth," "Romeo and Juliet," "Angels in America," and "Jesus Christ Superstar."

Derry Girls star Nicola Coughlan is taking the world by storm

Nicola Coughlan's career is on the rise, and it has been ever since she began playing "the wee lesbian" Clare Devlin in the Irish comedy "Derry Girls" in 2018. The Lisa McGee-written series, which also stars Saoirse-Monica Jackson, Louisa Harland, Jamie-Lee O'Donnell, and Dylan Llewellyn, instantly became a critically acclaimed hit — and thankfully fans still have one more season to look forward to.

Aside from her role in "Bridgerton," "Derry Girls" is Coughlan's biggest role to date. However, at the same time she scored a main role in the Irish comedy, Coughlan had a recurring role in the period drama, "Harlots," which starred the likes of Jessica Brown Findlay and Eloise Smyth. The actor has also continued to lean into her Irish roots off-screen, co-writing a six-part podcast comedy called "Whistle Through the Shamrocks," which she dubbed "a story about Ireland, love, murder, and potatoes," per Instagram.

Now, Nicola Coughlan is back on the small screen as "Bridgerton" favorite Penelope Featherington. Of course, that's not her only persona on the show. At the end of Season 1, it was revealed that Penelope was the person behind Lady Whistledown's razor sharp quill, with the legendary Julie Andrews voicing the gossip writer. The actor is very excited for viewers to see Penelope's "glow up" in Season 2 and, of course, to watch as everyone else in the ton scrambles to discover Lady Whistledown's identity, per Glamour.

Calam Lynch worked with Nicola Coughlan before Bridgerton

The son of Irish actors Finbar Lynch and Niamh Cusack, Calam Lynch is in the early stages of his career. He bagged his first screen credit in Christopher Nolan's critically acclaimed film "Dunkirk" in 2017. This minor role saw him playing an unnamed sailor, but he quickly moved on to bigger roles, nabbing a leading part in Disney's adaptation of Anna Sewell's classic novel "Black Beauty" in 2020. The following year, he starred in "Benediction" alongside Peter Capaldi and Jack Lowden.

Now, Lynch is another fresh face in the second season of "Bridgerton." He plays a printer's assistant named Theo Sharpe. But as Shondaland revealed on Instagram, there's more to him than meets the eye. "He's not just a working class man, he's also an intellectual who fights for the rights for all." Viewers will have to wait and see what causes Theo is fighting for, but we're willing to bet as a printer's assistant, he'll encounter Penelope Featherington — most likely as her alter-ego Lady Whistledown. If he does, it wouldn't be the first time Lynch worked with Nicola Coughlan. 

Before "Bridgerton," Lynch had a guest role in "Derry Girls," appearing in Season 2, Episode 5 as John Paul O'Reilly, the older guy who agrees to go to the prom with Erin, only to stand her up. Lynch's role may have been small, but at the time he called it a "career peak" — though "Bridgerton" may have claimed that title now.

You might recognize Claudia Jessie from a number of British TV shows

Claudia Jessie plays the fifth eldest Bridgerton sibling, Eloise, who places great importance on freedom and independent thinking and, as a result, becomes embroiled in the mystery that is Lady Whistledown. "For her, Lady Whistledown is an expression of the potential for freedom that Eloise talks about so avidly ... she's a working woman. That's Eloise's idea of heaven," Jessie explained of her character to Town & Country. The actor noted that, while her character will have her own love story in a later season, she doesn't think Eloise is ready to debut yet. Instead, she'll still be hot on the heels of Lady Whistledown in Season 2.

Before nabbing the role of Eloise, Jessie's biggest roles were in the comedy series "Porter" and the BBC's historical drama "Vanity Fair." While shooting the adaptation of William Makepeace Thackery's classic novel, Jessie got used to wearing the period costumes she'd don in "Bridgerton" two years later. "Once we started filming it quickly became quite normal to be wearing a corset and sitting between takes in a private members' club in London that I probably wouldn't be allowed into usually!" she told You Magazine.

Viewers might also recognize Jessie from some of her smaller TV roles. Comedy fans might know her as Tasha from the Netflix sitcom "Lovesick" or as Nessa from "Defending the Guilty," while crime drama fans might know her better as Jodie Taylor from "Line of Duty."

Ruth Gemmell played an important British TV mom

If Shondaland wanted a well-known British star to play Lady Violet Bridgerton, they certainly found one in Ruth Gemmell, who has been a staple on the stage and small screen for almost three decades. In the steamy period drama, Gemmell plays the mother of the Bridgerton children and the matriarch of their family. Widowed years ago, it's Violet's job to protect her family. However, in an interview with Shondaland, Gemmell revealed this wasn't the first "Bridgerton" role she auditioned for. "I think quite a few of us auditioned for different roles, actually. I auditioned for Lady Cowper," she recalled.

Gemmell's credits prior to "Bridgerton" include almost all of the United Kingdom's popular soaps — everything from "Casualty" to "Eastenders" to "Holby City." She's also appeared in a ton of long-running dramas like "Spooks," "Midsomer Murders," "Waking the Dead," and "Silent Witness." However, there's one role that will really stand out on her resume for anyone who grew up watching "Tracy Beaker" on CBBC in the early aughts. 

Fans will, of course, recognize this actor as Tracy's long-lost mum, Carly Beaker. Gemmell has since reprised this decade-old role in the 2021 reboot series, "My Mum Tracy Beaker." It turns out Tracy Beaker's mom is a famous actor, too!

Rupert Evans has a magical role in a popular reboot

Ruth Gemmell's character Lady Violet Bridgerton is a widow on the show, but somehow Rupert Evans has been cast to play her husband, Edmund, in Season 2. The late Viscount Bridgerton will be making an appearance (probably in a flashback or dream sequence) for one episode of the series. Viewers will know that Edmund was absent from Season 1, but it wasn't made clear how he died. Well, according to Express, he "died at the age of 39 after being stung by a bee." His untimely death meant he never met his youngest child, Hyacinth, who hadn't been born yet.

For Evans, the actor bringing Edmund back to life, this won't be the first time he's portrayed a character who has already died. Since 2018, he's been playing the magical whitelighter (basically a guardian angel for witches) Harry Greenwood in the "Charmed" reboot. The series is set in the present and Harry, who was born in the 1920s and died in the 1950s, was given a second (and third) chance at life after he died. This reboot is nothing like the original 1998 series though, Evans confirmed. "I think it's a darker tone than the original," he told The Wrap.

Evans has also starred in a handful of films and Shakespeare productions, but he's best known for playing Frank Frink in the dystopian series, "The Man in the High Castle," from 2015 to 2018.

Luke Thompson swapped the stage for the small screen

Luke Thompson plays the second oldest child, Benedict Bridgerton. Benedict is a wildly hedonistic character who relishes not having to bear any of the family responsibilities his older brother Anthony must shoulder. It doesn't seem like his behavior's going to change in a hurry, but Thompson revealed there's more to his character than viewers saw in Season 1. "There's a bit of a question mark when it comes to Benedict, and as an actor, that's such a great thing to play with. You get to reveal the character bit by bit instead of showing the audience who he is right away," the actor said in an interview with Shondaland.

However, there's one part of the role the Southampton-born actor admitted he struggled with; pronouncing Regency-era English, which is harder than it looks. "Watching anyone, myself included, trying to wrap their mouths around [Regency English] and failing repeatedly is one of my favorite things," he joked to Red Magazine (via the Mirror). Thankfully, the cast got everything right in the end, but some of those tongue twisters were most likely hard to master.

Prior to joining the cast of "Bridgerton," Thompson concentrated his career on theater roles, performing more than half a dozen Shakespeare plays since 2013, including Globe productions of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Julius Caesar." His first big television role was as Simon in the BBC drama, "In the Club," and he later had a supporting role in "Dunkirk."

Ruby Barker learnt a lot while filming Bridgerton

The newlywed Marina Thompson (Ruby Barker) left quite a legacy at the end of Season 1, and now she's back to stir up more trouble. Barker, however, is less focused on what happened on screen and more on what's going on behind the scenes. "The best part [of Bridgerton] was the opportunity to learn from the people around me," she told Express.

If you're a British soap fan, you might know Barker from her roles in the medical series, "Doctors." She guest-starred on the show twice, once in 2017 and again in 2019, and played two different characters: Nina Hobbs and Shelley Williams. Anyone who watched CBBC in the mid-2010s might also recognize Barker from a six-episode arc as Daise on the long-running series, "Wolfblood."

Barker's eclectic list of credits is proof that a fancy education isn't everything. In fact, the actor told PopSugar that she didn't go to drama school to get where she is today. "I just sort of worked my way up, starting in community theater, and then doing children's television from there and eventually making small appearances on TV dramas," she explained. "After that, I got to do my first independent film, and then my Bridgerton audition, so it's all happened quite naturally."

Disney Channel fans will probably recognize Luke Newton

After having his heart broken by Marina Thompson, Colin Bridgerton leaves the ton to do some traveling. He's not gone for good though. Luke Newton, who plays the third-oldest Bridgerton sibling, will return from Greece just in time for Season 2.

Newton's career, which began over a decade ago, is definitely on an upward trajectory. The actor got his start on British television in 2010, playing Luke Attwood in BBC teen drama "The Cut." In 2013, he guest-starred in an episode of "Mr Selfridge," and by 2016, he'd bagged a regular role on the Disney Channel series, "The Lodge," as Ben Evans.

"Bridgerton" is Newton's biggest screen credit to date, and he loves playing a character so similar to himself. He told Shondaland that he and Colin have a lot in common. "I like to think I'm as laid-back and relaxed as Colin is in stressful situations. I also love food, as does Col." However, there's one part of his character's personality he hopes he doesn't identify with, and that's not being "as easily led or manipulated as Colin can sometimes be." Newton previously told the outlet that he thinks his character is naïve and still has a lot to learn, so let's hope his trip around the world has prepared him for Season 2.

Polly Walker has shared the screen with some A-list celebs

Everyone's a character in "Bridgerton," but Polly Walker's Lady Portia Featherington has got personality to spare, and it's usually pretty comical. Walker is back for the period drama's second season. With Lady Featherington's story ending on a cliffhanger in Season 1, Season 2 will reveal which man will lay claim to the Featherington estate. But, despite everything that's been thrown at the character, Walker explained to Metro that Portia will always keep going. "I think she's a survivor," she said. "She's just trying to survive in a very difficult climate and, in many ways, she is the ultimate feminist."

Outside of "Bridgerton," Walker made a name for herself as Jane Fairfax from the 1996 adaptation of "Emma" starring Gwyneth Paltrow and as Gill Biggeloe from "Line of Duty," a series that also featured her "Bridgerton" co-star Claudia Jessie. Walker has had an incredibly diverse career, and there's been nothing she hasn't loved. "Each part has its thing. I can't say there's just one favorite because you have to move on and get on with the next," she told Country & Town House

The actor is probably best known for playing Cassiopeia in the star-studded film, "Clash of the Titans." Walker shared the screen with A-list actors like Ralph Fiennes, Mads Mikkelsen, Luke Evans, Liam Neeson, Sam Worthington, and Gemma Arterton.

Adjoa Andoh's career has taken her on plenty of adventures

Adjoa Andoh's Lady Danbury is another familiar character returning for the second season of "Bridgerton." Along with Golda Rosheuvel's Queen Charlotte, Ruth Gemmell's Violet Bridgerton, and Polly Walker's Lady Featherington, she's one of the stalwart matriarchs of the series. "Lady Danbury is the character I've been waiting for. With her, I'm able to put all the things in place that I haven't had the opportunity to do as a Black actress from my generation," Andoh said, gushing about her character in an interview with Shondaland.

"Bridgerton" is hardly Andoh's most notable role, though. Viewers may recognize the prolific British actor as Brenda Mazibuko from the 2009 sports biopic "Invictus," which also starred Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon, or from one of her many television roles. Andoh has also starred in many popular British shows with cult followings, including "Doctor Who," "Broadchurch," "Silent Witness," and "Law & Order: UK." 

In 2021, she nabbed a role in "The Witcher," another popular Netflix series, as Mother Nenneke. While Nenneke is a wildly different character to Lady Danbury, the fantasy series has some benefits over the period drama. "The glorious thing was: I don't have to sit in hair and makeup for three hours before we start doing anything for The Witcher," she explained in an interview with Netflix.