Regé-Jean Page had viewers drooling on Shonda Rhimes’ Netflix series Bridgerton prior to his shocking exit off the show. Page starred in Season 1 of the show as Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings, who had a hot and steamy relationship with Phoebe Dynevor’s Daphne Bridgerton.
Now, Rhimes, who is the cover star for Variety’s Show Woman of the Year, is opening up on why she doesn’t blame the star for leaving although fans were extremely disappointed and caused quite a stir on the internet.
"I don't think I expected everybody to have such a reaction to it," she said. "My assumption of what people knew of romance novels was … I overestimated a great deal."
The Shondaland showrunner also made it clear that fans wont see Page in any forthcoming seasons of Bridgerton either after he declined an invitation to come back.
"And here's why," she said. "He's an enormous star now. As I like to say, the idea that we would write Regé to stand around in the background doesn't make any sense at all to me. 'What would he do?' is what I like to say."
"Rightfully, he said, 'I signed up to do this one lovely story, this closed-ended storyline. I'm good!'" she recalled. "And I don't blame him for that. I think that he was really smart to leave the perfection as the perfection."
Bridgerton has been renewed for three additional seasons following its first season premiere in December 2020, and is based on a book series by Julia Quinn of the same title.
Page will soon be seen in Netflix’s The Gray Man in 2022.