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Shonda Rhimes surprised by fan outcry over Rege-Jean Page's Bridgerton departure

·1-min read

Bridgerton creator Shonda Rhimes was stunned by the fan reaction to Rege-Jean Page's "exit" from the hit show, insisting he was only ever supposed to appear in the first season.

Devotees fell in love with Page's Duke of Hastings and were stunned last month when it was confirmed he wouldn't be back for a second run of the show - and Rhimes had no idea superfans would be so upset.

"I was really shocked, because usually that happens when I've killed off somebody that’s been around for a while," she told Vanity Fair.

"We didn’t even kill him! He’s still alive!" she went on.

But Rhimes is glad Page left such an impact on the Bridgerton faithful, adding: "He is a powerful, amazing actor and that meant we did our job."

Sharing: "Every season, our job is finding the right people and putting together this incredible, world-shifting romance," Rhimes remarked that the Duke of Hastings' character arc was all wrapped up.

"I mean, really, what would Rege-Jean do, you know what I mean? We gave them (Duke and Duchess of Hastings) their happily ever after! And now we have this next couple coming," she said.

The Duchess, played by Phoebe Dynevor, will be back for the second season, while it was also announced on Tuesday that Netflix bosses have signed on for a third and fourth season of the period drama hit, which launched on Christmas Day.