‘Bridgerton’ Season Three Release Date Revealed Following Strike Delays

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LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 13: Luke Newton and Nicola Coughlan attend the Netflix BAFTA 2022 party at Chiltern Firehouse on March 13, 2022 in London, England

Amid months of delay due to the joint SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes, it was revealed today that the third season of “Bridgerton” will drop in two parts this May and June. Book-to-television adaptations of Julia Quinn’s acclaimed “Bridgerton” series have long maintained a loyal fanbase.

The show’s whimsical romantic stories set against a fictionalized Regency era England complete with string quartet covers of contemporary pop music made a splash upon its initial 2021 release, earning season one star Rege Jean Page an Emmy nomination for Lead Actor in a Drama Series. The show was additionally nominated for Outstanding Drama Series. Following a second season and a prequel titled “Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story,” fans were eager for the show’s third season, originally set for release this month.

While the actors involved in the production are entirely from the U.K. and Ireland, thus represented by a different union called Equity, the show’s creator Shonda Rhimes is American, and a longtime member of the WGA. The show’s halt was a disappointment to many, but fans of Rhimes and her production company Shondaland were glad to see their favorite showrunner fighting for fair wages and protections for union members.

Colin and Penelope’s Season

Each season of “Bridgerton” follows one of the siblings in the aristocratic Bridgerton family finding love. The third season will focus on the third oldest brother, Colin Bridgerton (played by Luke Newton), and his journey of falling for his best friend Penelope Featherington (played by Nicola Coughlan), who is secretly the infamous local gossip columnist Lady Whistledown, voiced by Julie Andrews.

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Rejoice in this most thrilling news. Bridgerton Season 3 shall debut in two parts: Part 1 on May 16th and Part 2 on June 13th.

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Each story explores a different literary romance trope, with season one revolving around a fake relationship turning real, season two following an enemies-to-lovers dynamic, and season three following a friends-to-lovers scenario. Fans look forward to see the long awaited slow burn play out on the big screen.

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Why The Unions Went On Strike

The Writers Guild of America (WGA) represents thousands of screenwriters behind some of television and film’s biggest hits. May 2023 began a complete strike from countless writers nationwide, beginning with major productions in New York City and Los Angeles. The last WGA strike took place between 2007 and 2008, and impacted countless major television programs at the time.

The recent strike is a result of a rapid pay decrease by 23% since the pandemic, as a result of both inflation and streaming services running shorter seasons. Additionally, several guild members revealed that their respective workplaces refused to impose regulations on the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the writer’s room. Some tech entrepreneurs insist that AI can replace several types of writing careers, and writers are fighting back.

Months after the WGA went on strike, SAG-AFTRA joined them. The era of streaming services for television and film has not only changed the viewing experience for consumers, but the pay for actors, writers, directors, and crew members. SAG-AFTRA supports all of the WGA’s demands, and have several of their own. Among the SAG-AFTRA demands were increased minimum pay rates, increased streaming residuals to match the rising inflation costs, AI regulation, and improved working conditions. The WGA strike ended in September, while the SAG-AFTRA strike ended in November.

“Bridgerton” season three hits Netflix on May 16 and June 13.

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