Not only is she a complex and compelling character, but Queen Charlotte has the kind of wardrobe and wigs that bring gay fans to their knees, so it’s no surprise that both shows have been so totally embraced by the queer community. A fact that is deeply meaningful to the out actor. “It’s amazing, you know. You work on something, and you hope that when you put it out there, it reaches people and touches people, and they get it,” Rosheuvel tells PRIDE. “For my community to get on board, yeah, it’s amazing. I feel very blessed.”
This time around, fans who fell in love with the Queen, who lives for gossip, rules The Ton’s social hierarchy, and carefully protects the reputation of her husband and great love King George, will get to see so much more of the monarch. Not only does the show serve as an origin point for her love story with George, in all its struggles and passion, but it’s a portrait of a woman thrust into a life not of her choosing, being asked to be both everything and nothing to the world. It’s a gilded cage that she has to learn to break out of if she wants to live any kind of real life.
Watch PRIDE’s full interview with Golda Rosheuvel below.
PRIDE Interviews 'Queen Charlotte' Star Golda Rosheuvel On Her Steamy & Queer …
But perhaps even more profound is how the series deals with race in this world. By the time we meet her in Bridgerton, The Ton is fully integrated, but in Queen Charlotte, they’re just at the beginning of what is called “the great experiment,” meaning that the power, land, and titles given to the people of color in this world are far from settled — and that precarious situation also rests on Charlotte’s shoulders.
It’s a meaty role, with a beautifully fleshed-out character, which Rosheuvel says is a dream to bring to life. ”To be able to play a well, fully rounded person that’s messy, that’s joyous, that’s confident in her own soul that’s not confident in certain moments that’s complex, and that has a complex relationship with her family and her children,” she says. “That’s a dream for an actress, isn’t it?”
She’s thrilled audiences will finally get to know the character that she’s already been imagining and building in her own mind for years. “So many different layers are played out in Queen Charlotte, that really informs the person that you know, and love in Bridgerton,” she reveals. “But to be able to push into that and lean into that part of her that you don’t get to see in Bridgerton. And that kind of behind-the-scenes is really amazing. As for me as an actress.”
While Queen Charlotte maintains the steamy regency romance of its progenitor, there is a greater degree of seriousness and melancholy to the story that makes it feel more substantial while still escapist. It deals with heavier themes including race, mental health, and, yes, queerness. Rosheuvel applauds how the show handles them all.
“I think it’s brilliantly executed,” she shares. “I think it’s driven by story and that’s the way to do those kinds of things. That’s the way to discuss difficult topics.”
She’s especially glowing when she talks about series creator Shonda Rhimes’s vision. “Whether their journey has to do with race, or queerness, or mental health, the storyline is driven through the exquisite writing of Shonda Rhimes. But I think as artists we have an obligation we have the platform to do, and to talk about those things in a creative way. And if that pushes the door open a little bit more, a little bit wider for us all to be able to come to the table and have the conversation that’s a plus for me,” she shares. “But it’s making a space where we can have that conversation. And we do that through creativity through storytelling.”
Queen Charlotte is streaming now on Netflix. Watch the trailer below.
Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story | Official Trailer | Netflix