Is Ruby Stokes leaving Bridgerton? Francesca to be recast for season 3

12 May 2022, 14:21

Jonathan Bailey gets naked in dramatic Bridgerton season 2 trailer

Katie Louise Smith

By Katie Louise Smith

Where is Francesca Bridgerton? The sixth Bridgerton sibling, played by Ruby Stokes, is absent for most of season 2. Hannah Dodd will now take over the role in season 3.

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Bridgerton has already said an official goodbye to Regé-Jean Page's Duke of Hastings, but it looks like he's not the only absent character in season 2.

All eight Bridgerton siblings are present and correct in season 2, including Phoebe Dynevor's Daphne Bridgerton who plays a much less prominent role in the second outing. But it's now been revealed by showrunner Chris Van Dusen that one Bridgerton child actually disappeared from most of season 2's events.

While viewers get to see more of younger siblings Gregory and Hyacinth, Francesca Bridgerton only makes a short appearance this season.

Francesca, who was off-screen in Bath for all but one episode of season 1, was intended to have a much larger role this time around. That plan unfortunately ended up being dropped because Ruby Stokes, the actress who plays her, was unable to complete filming due to prior commitments to another Netflix series.

Where is Francesca Bridgerton?

Bridgerton season 2: Here's why Francesca Bridgerton is missing
Bridgerton season 2: Here's why Francesca Bridgerton is missing. Picture: Netflix

Speaking to TV Line, Van Dusen explained that Ruby had to leave the Bridgerton set after only filming three episodes because she had to start shooting her new Netflix show, in which she plays the lead.

"I love Francesca, but we lost her midway through Season 2,” Van Dusen told the publication. “After exhausting all other options, she unfortunately had to come out due to reasons beyond our control. Perhaps Season 3 will be the charm.”

It was recently announced that Ruby will be playing the lead role of Lucy in Netflix's new series Lockwood & Co. And now it looks like her role in that show means she will sadly be departing from Bridgerton as the role of Francesca has been recast.

Ruby Stokes plays Francesca Bridgerton
Ruby Stokes plays Francesca Bridgerton. Picture: Netflix

In May 2022, it was announced via Deadline that Hannah Dodd will be replacing Ruby Stokes as Francesca Bridgerton in the Netflix series going forward.

Hannah will make her debut as Francesca in season 3, with filming set to begin in summer 2022. No release date has been confirmed yet but executive producer Shonda Rhimes has hinted that it could arrive quicker than season 2.

Hannah, who recently appeared in Anatomy Of A Scandal, is also set to appear in Enola Holmes 2 alongside Millie Bobby Brown and Louis Partridge later in 2022.

Hannah Dodd set to take over from Ruby Stokes as Francesca Bridgerton
Hannah Dodd set to take over from Ruby Stokes as Francesca Bridgerton. Picture: Getty

If Netflix continue to follow the pattern of Julia Quinn's book series – where each sibling gets their own season – then Francesca's story will probably feature in Bridgerton season 6. (Of course, that also depends on whether the show is renewed by the streaming service.)

In the sixth Bridgerton book, titled 'When He Was Wicked', Francesca and her relationships with John and Michael Sterling become the main focus. Many Bridgerton fans count Francesca's book as one of the best in the series so here's hoping the Netflix show gets to explore it fully.

Read more about Bridgerton here:

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