Dearest readers, we are pleased to bring you the first sighting of Regé-Jean Page, aka Bridgerton’s Duke of Hastings, since his heartbreaking exit from the series was announced.
The 31-year-old fan favorite was spotted hurrying out of a residential building in North Hollywood, Calif. on Friday, April 2, just hours after it was announced that he would not reprise his role on Shonda Rhimes’ hit period drama’s upcoming second season. Page wore a white KN95 mask, a white T-shirt that displayed his impressive biceps, black pants, and a black sweatshirt tied around his waist as he walked down a flight of steps to the sidewalk, holding a suitcase.
“While all eyes are on Lord Anthony Bridgerton’s search for a Viscountess, we bid farewell to Regé-Jean Page, who triumphantly played the Duke of Hastings,” read a statement posted on Bridgerton’s Instagram page on Friday, disguised as one of show narrator Lady Whistledown’s society papers. “We’ll miss Simon’s on-screen presence, but he’ll always be a Bridgerton family member.”
Page later confirmed on his personal Instagram page that he would not reprise his role as the Duke of Hastings, also known as Simon Basset. He stated, “A once-in-a-lifetime experience. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as your Duke. Become a part of this family – not just on-screen, but also off-screen. Our incredibly creative and generous cast, crew, and incredible fans – it’s all been beyond my wildest dreams. The love is genuine and will continue to grow.”
Bridgerton’s second season will focus on Page’s character’s brother-in-law, played by Jonathan Bailey, who was introduced in the first season. Season two production will begin in the spring, it was announced in January. There has been no announcement of a premiere date.
Meanwhile, fans can continue to pine for Page’s return to the big screen—the big one. He began filming The Gray Man for Netflix in March. Chris Evans, Ryan Gosling, Billy Bob Thornton, Alfre Woodard, and Ana de Armas also star in the action thriller. Anthony and Joe Russo, who directed the final two Avengers films, directed the project.
Page is also set to star alongside Chris Pine, Sophia Lillis, and Hugh Grant in a new Dungeons and Dragons film adaptation. The film is scheduled to open in May 2022.