When the news of Regé-Jean Page leaving his role as the Duke of Hastings in Bridgerton broke, fans couldn’t believe that their beloved actor was no longer part of Netflix’s show. Rumors of Page accepting other roles in film and TV started to spread; however, the 31-year-old British star never addressed the real reason until now.
During an interview with Variety, he revealed that it was part of the plan. “That’s what was meant,” he said. “Simon was this bomb of a one-season antagonist, to be reformed and to find his true self through Daphne,” he told the publication. “I think one of the bravest things about the romance genre is allowing people a happy ending.”
According to the executive producer of the show, Shonda Rhimes, Page’s character wasn’t recurrent. “We’re used to speculation and drama when I kill a character off of a show, but this was different,” Rhimes told Variety. “Regé was just doing what his character was written to do — ride off, alive, into his happily ever after.”
Although Page might not come back to Bridgerton, he is proud to represent Black actors in period shows. According to the actor, he and his friends “used to joke about the fact that you don‘t see a Black man on a horse.”
The actor said Black and Brown people should play royals on tv, and it should not be a complicated decision. “It’s so simple. I can get on a horse, and I can put it on the screen; that’s step one,” he said. “I can be royalty, and [other people of color] can see the possibility of being royalty. Standing there, wearing the boots and the jacket, doing the dances, inhabiting a space that is perfectly possible for me to inhabit, changes how you see the world.”
Page continues working hard to keep elevating his acting career, and his upcoming project is along with Hollywood’s biggest stars in Netflix’s most expensive film ever. The actor joins Ana De Armas, Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans, Alfre Woodard, Billy Bob Thornton, Jessica Henwick, Wagner Moura, Dhanush, and Julia Butters to give life to the characters of The Gray Man.
Production started on March in Los Angeles and will be under the direction of brothers Joe and Anthony Russo, known for many Marvel movies, including Avengers: Endgame.