Regé-Jean Page's smile is just as bright over a grainy Zoom call as you see it on the Netflix's hit series, Bridgerton. Now on his second show under the elite Shondaland umbrella, Regé-Jean is ready to play the fake 1800s boyfriend of your dreams. If you did fall in love with him during his time starring in For the People, then get ready to absolutely swoon the second that he steps on the screen in this scandalous new series.
Seventeen talked to Regé-Jean about bringing Simon to life on screen, what got him excited for Bridgerton, and Simon and Daphne's relationship.
17: The first season focuses on Daphne and Simon as they pretend to date for their own motives. Despite everything that happens, they constantly come back to each other. Why do you think that is?
Regé-Jean Page: There's something about finding someone who is able to stand up to you. They're both characters who are very prideful, very intelligent, and who are used to being able to command any situation that they're in. And now they've found someone who is not easily defeated. Who will stand up to their barbs and their defenses, who is their equal. I think they get a bit of a brain-gasm off of that. I think they enjoy finding someone who can meet them eye to eye.
17: This is your second series for Shondaland as you recently starred in For the People for two seasons before it's cancellation. What was it like to get to come back to the family with this new project?
RJP: I really never left. It was like threatening to leave home and then just moving into the upstairs bedroom. We just announced that we were wrapping up on For the People and they were like, 'Before you go, we got this other thing we're working on. We'd love you to have a read.' And so I read the scripts, then we had a couple of meetings. Those discussions were very exciting because they wanted to do something that we hadn't seen before. So I kind of turned up in London and sat at the table read. All the British actors came together and went, 'This isn't what a period drama looks like.' And I was like, 'Oh, this is exactly what Shonda's scripts look like.' It feels like I've never left. There's a very strong in-house style. I kind of got to act as a bit of a bridge between the two worlds [those just joining and those who have worked with this company before], telling everyone, 'Now the way that this happens is basically read everything at double pace, and you'll be right at home.'
17: Other than getting to work with some incredible creators again, what made you want to jump onto this show?
RJP: It very exciting from the go. The conversations I was having right at the gestation as of this project were about all the space we had to do new things in a genre where people expect you to do things very traditionally. Which of these forced boundaries can we play around or outside of? What are the ins and outs of it? What 21st century perspectives and conversations could we bring in? And just kind of how much fun we could have with this? How glamorous could we be? How fun? How witty? How sexy? What can we bring people from this period that they haven't seen before? That opened up a lot of exciting ground that we had a lot of fun playing with.
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