On June 17, 2023, Netflix fans got their first taste of an in-person Tudum after two years of the virtual event being attended by millions of people online around the world. Held in São Paulo, Brazil, this year’s Tudum saw thousands of diehards packed themselves inside the park at the Bienal — and nearly 74,000 more tuning into the global live stream —for two glorious hours to hear exclusive news, watch never-before-seen footage and trailers, and indulge in first looks of our favorite series, films, and games, all presented by some of Netflix’s biggest stars.
But most exciting of all for us? We were delighted to see Bridgerton star Nicola Coughlan, who plays Penelope Featherington in the hit Shondaland series, tease us for the upcoming third season, which the actor said will be “magical and romantic,” and, happily, “quite scandalous.”
As she walked on stage, smiling from ear to ear, Coughlan complimented the Brazilian crowd for their warm welcome saying, “You make everyone feel like Beyonce!” Then she clocked a sign in the crowd to which she excitedly responded to the fans holding it: “Polin stans, I see you!” Plus, she sent a wink and a nod to the fans of Julia Quinn’s original book series on which the Netflix show is based who may have a good clue as to what’s coming this season on Bridgerton.
Coughlan also presented a few first-look photos which feature Pen and Colin from the upcoming season of Bridgerton, a story that focuses on their ongoing relationship as friends — and possibly more.
“This year is the year Penelope thought she was having last year, if that makes sense,” Nicola Coughlan told Shondaland. “Because I think she thought that she and Colin were a thing and it was happening, and then she got a really rude awakening at the end. I always say year one is ‘girl,’ year two is ‘not a girl, not yet a woman,’ and this year is ‘woman.’ So, she’s entering into a woman era this time.”
“Luke [Newton] and I sharing this experience together has been great because he’s someone who completely gets what you’re going through, and we can kind of be a united front on stuff,” says Coughlan. “We can talk about scenes that we’re nervous about or whatnot. Obviously, we’ve had scenes together since the beginning, but it’s definitely different this time around.”
“[There’s been] a nice payoff for me [this season] because when [Colin] came back from his travels in season two, his head was kind of still in the same place that it was in season one,” Luke Newton recently told Shondaland. “He still wanted to resolve the things with Marina and kind of felt guilty about that. Whereas there’s definitely a massive shift this season, and I got to use my experience over the last two years to almost define a new character and a new role [for Colin].”
“She’s really grown up in these three years,” Coughlan says of her character. “I often think about playing characters who are a lot younger than you, and one of the most important things is not to patronize them and to realize that everyone, regardless of age, is a human being. I’ve been on a bit of a journey with her this time around — she’s embracing her womanhood, and then I’m, in a way, having to sort of step up and film these romantic scenes and all this stuff that’s totally out of my comfort zone.”
Also in attendance at the grand ball … er, um … event were Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story stars India Amarteifio and Corey Mylchreest, who could barely get a word in edgewise what with all the cheers and screams of love and admiration from the crowd. They reminisced about working together, how incredible the experience was, and also thanked everyone for welcoming their part of the story into the Bridgerverse.
They then introduced our beloved Queen Charlotte herself, Golda Rosheuvel, via a video message. “We came together to create something truly incredible,” Rosheuvel said, “and I love that we’re able to share that experience through our immersive ball,” referencing The Queen’s Ball: A Bridgerton Experience, which, after a successful run across the globe, Rosheuvel then revealed the cheering crowd would be coming to São Paulo!
As exciting as all this news is, we’re only just getting started with what’s to come about the third season of Bridgerton. But, if you missed any of these splendid tidbits from upcoming Shondaland shows — or just need to bask in it all again — you can catch them on Netflix’s YouTube channel.
And while there is so much more to come from season three of Bridgerton, for now, make sure to catch up on everything we know about season three, and listen and subscribe to Bridgerton: The Official Podcast and Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story, the Official Podcast, available on Apple, iHeart, and wherever you get your favorite podcasts. Also be sure to check back here for more information, photos, and inside looks as more is released over the coming months.
And lest we forget, get caught up on Julia Quinn’s book series, all before season three hits Netflix:
Valentina Valentini is a London-based entertainment, travel, and food writer and is also a senior contributor to Shondaland. Elsewhere, she has written for Vanity Fair, Vulture, Variety, Thrillist, Heated, and The Washington Post. Her personal essays can be read in the Los Angeles Times and Longreads, and her tangents and general complaints can be seen on Instagram at @ByValentinaV.
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