We’ve Finally Got a Look at the ‘Bridgerton’ Spinoff

bridgerton prequel
We’ve Finally Got a Look at the ‘Bridgerton’ SpinoNetflix

Every respectable queen has an origin story. Queen Elizabeth got The Crown, while Queen Charlotte is getting her own Bridgerton prequel that will document her rise to power. Called Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story, the series was announced on Bridgerton's Instagram and even revealed its queen. But have no fear, because the new series isn't straying too far from the familiar: Golda Rosheuvel, the actress who originated the role of Queen Charlotte, is stepping back into the girdle for the upcoming series. But she isn't the only woman with plans to inhabit the role.

Netflix has revealed that India Amarteifio will debut as the younger version of the royal. Sharing the screen with her will be Arsema Thomas as the younger version of Lady Danbury, Ruth Gemmell as Lady Bridgerton, and Corey Mylchreest as a young King George. In a new first-look photo from the series, Netflix offered a first glimpse of Thomas as a young Lady Agatha Danbury, dressed for one of Bridgerton's trademark lavish balls.

In Rosheuvel's character's timeline, Adjoa Andoh will remain on board as Lady Danbury. So keep an eye out, because the social season is about to play out on multiple timelines. "It's definitely going to have all the passion and the drama," Rosheuvel told E! News. "You're going to see young Queen Charlotte, young Lady Danbury, young Violet [Bridgerton], young Brimsley. It's going to be in the world of Bridgerton, so you're going to see how they got to where they are now."

Arsema Thomas as a young Lady Danbury.Netflix

Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story was initially announced way back in May 2021, but new reveals from Netflix are ramping up the excitement. In the video, streaming above, a young Charlotte attempts to escape the palace by climbing over the garden wall when she's interrupted by a handsome gentleman. She explains her concern that the king may be a beast or a troll because no one will speak of him—then, she learns that this interloper is, in fact, King George. Helluva meet-cute, isn't it? Full of wit, flirtation, and sumptuous visuals, the clip brings everything we love about Bridgerton into a different era.

For fans eager to learn more about what the prequel story will hold, Variety has also published a list of character descriptions:

Betrothed to the mysterious King of England against her will, Charlotte arrives in London only to realize she was not exactly what the royals were expecting. As she learns to navigate the palace, the ‘ton and her unpredictable husband, she grows into one of Europe’s most unforgettable monarchs.

Princess Augusta: Determined to maintain her family’s power, the Dowager Princess does what it takes to secure her son’s place as monarch amidst a changing, modernizing Britain.

Young King George: Handsome, charismatic, and a bit of a mystery, George has always bowed to the restraints placed on him as the Crown. Until now. Having to share his space, and bed, with his new wife forces George to face his hidden demons head on.

Young Agatha Danbury: Under the thumb of a much older husband, Agatha uses Charlotte’s arrival to find her own way into society. With keen knowledge of the once divided social scene and the intricacies of marriage, Agatha becomes a guiding light for the new Queen, all while finding her own voice and power we’ll soon recognize as Bridgerton’s iconic Lady Danbury.

The mention of "the once divided social scene" offers a clue about what we might expect in the way of world-building. As Bridgerton fans know, the story takes place in a world where King George, at the suggestion of Queen Charlotte, has elevated people of color to dukedoms and positions of nobility, creating a world where possibility, opportunity, and romance abound for every character. As the show's lore goes, it's the interracial love between these two royals that inspired the king to create the same possibilities for everyone else. As we watch the king and queen's relationship grow from an uneasy arranged marriage to true love, no doubt we'll see how their union changed the world. Rosheuvel teased as much, telling E! News, "We want modern stories. We want stories that reflect the world that we're living in today. We want diversity, we want inclusion. And I think you can see from the popularity and the success of the show globally that this is what people want in their storytelling nowadays."

queen charlotte india ria amarteifio as young queen charlotte in episode 101 of queen charlotte cr liam danielnetflix © 2022
India Amarteifio as a young Queen Charlotte.LIAM DANIEL/NETFLIX

The Bridgerton universe is also expanding even further with a new book tied to the unnamed prequel, penned collaboratively by Bridgerton author Julia Quinn and Rhimes herself. The novel will chronicle Queen Charlotte's rise to power and unpack “how the young Queen’s marriage to King George sparked both a great love story and a societal shift, creating the world of the Ton inherited by the characters in Bridgerton.” Though the book's publication date remains unknown, Avon Books promises that it will be timed to the Netflix series.

“Queen Charlotte has been such a moving character to write and now having the opportunity to work with Julia to adapt this story into a book is such an exciting opportunity,” Rhimes said in a statement. “I can’t wait for fans of this universe to read the story of a character that has resonated so deeply with our audience.”

Quinn went on to add, “Taking Bridgerton from book to screen was fascinating for me to watch, and it’s such an exciting challenge for me to take it in the other direction, this time crafting Shonda’s brilliant vision into a novel. I’m especially thrilled to have the opportunity to write about Queen Charlotte, who was not in the original novels. Her character—and Golda Rosheuvel’s brilliant portrayal of her—was a tour de force, and I think readers will love getting a chance to know her more deeply.”

If Bridgerton—which has been picked up for a Season Three and Four, by the way—is any indication, we're in for a spectacular new series. Check out the first image of the two Queen Charlottes together below, and stay tuned for updates as we learn more.

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