The reason Francesca was recast in ‘Bridgerton’ season 3

The first four episodes of much-anticipated “Bridgerton” Season 3 is finally here, and fans can’t help but notice a major difference — the actress playing Francesca Bridgerton has been replaced.

The hit Netflix series dropped on Thursday with many wondering why the beloved character, played by Ruby Stokes for the first two seasons, has been swapped out with newcomer Hannah Dodd.

Well, forget about behind-the-scenes drama. Stokes exited the role on “Bridgerton” in order to star in another Netflix drama, “Lockwood & Co.” Subsequently, Dodd stepped in to fill the shoes of Francesca, the sixth sibling and third daughter in the aristocratic family.

The recasting comes on the heels of Francesca preparing for her debut into the marriage market and shows up as the unexpected “diamond” among potential suitors.

Dodd says she found the character relatable because she shared the same “nervous” feelings while navigating becoming the newest member of the “Bridgerton” cast.

“Francesca has been preparing for (her debut). Filming it was absolutely terrifying, because it was quite early on in production, ”Dodd told Tudum. “There was a little bit of life imitating art there. She was nervous and I was nervous. She was watching people, and I was watching people to learn. We were kind of going through it together.”

“Bridgerton,” based on Julia Quinn’s romantic novels, spends much of the first four episodes bringing Francesca to the forefront after two seasons of not seeing the character get much screen time.

And while Netflix has yet to reveal the Season 4 lead, fans are now speculating Francesca may be the main focus for next season.

Dodd says she prepared to play the “beautiful” character by reading all of Quinn’s books.

“Because I didn’t know what I’d got myself in for, but I needed to read that as soon as possible,” she told TVline. “It’s such a beautiful book, and she’s such a beautiful character. I can’t really believe that I get to play her.”

“Bridgerton” Season 3 is currently streaming on Netflix.