“Bridgerton” star Ruby Barker opened up about allegedly never receiving any contact or assistance from Netflix or Shondaland after she endured a psychotic breakdown after the show wrapped production in 2019.
“Not a single person from Netflix, not a single person from Shondaland, since I have had two psychotic breaks from that show, have even contacted me or even emailed me to ask if I’m OK, or if I would benefit from any sort of aftercare or support,” Barker said in an installment of Oxford University’s LOAD podcast, video of which you can watch above. “Nobody.”
Barker played Marina, a regular on the show, and then returned to reprise her role as a guest star in Season 2. She explained that her first break happened once “Bridgerton” finished its first season, and the second incident took place in 2022.
She described her character as “ostracized,” and shared that took a toll on her outside of filming.
“During filming, I was deteriorating,” Barker said. “It was a really tormenting place for me to be because my character was very alienated, very ostracized, on her own under these horrible circumstances.”
She continued: “When I went into hospital a week after shooting ‘Bridgerton’ Season 1, it was really covered up and kept on the down-low because the show was going to be coming out.”
“In the run-up to the show coming out, I was just coming out from hospital, my Instagram following was going up, I had all these engagements to do,” Barker went on. “My life was changing drastically overnight and yet there was still no support and there still hasn’t been any support all that time. So I was trying really, really hard to act like it was OK and that I could work and that it wasn’t a problem.”
TheWrap has reached out to Netflix and Shondaland for comment on Barker’s assertions.
In May 2022, Barker made an Instagram post, detailing how she’d been feeling “unwell for a really long time” and that she’d “struggling” after her time on “Bridgerton.”
“I am in hospital at the minute and I am going to be discharged soon and hopefully get to continue with my life,” Barker wrote at the time. “I was raged-filled, angry, all this intergenerational trauma bundled up inside me. I was carrying the weight of the world on my back and now I am at the point where I have a diagnosis.” She also thanked Netflix for her role on the series.
Despite being mentally displaced at the time, Barker said she had to follow through with promoting the show.
“It’s almost like I had this metaphorical invisible gun to my head to sell this show because this show is bubbly and fun,” she said. “I don’t want to come out and poo poo on that because then I’ll never work again.”