Bridgerton series 2 filming FIRST LOOK

Bridgerton series 2 filming FIRST LOOK: Newcomer Simone Ashley transforms into Regency society siren Kate Sharma in striking blue gown as shooting begins at Royal Ascot

Under starter’s orders! Filming of Bridgerton’s second series has begun – and the show’s new leading lady is making her presence felt.

Dressed in a striking peacock blue gown, Simone Ashley was spotted in a crowd scene set at Royal Ascot.

The actress, 26, plays Regency society siren Kate Sharma, whose younger half-sister Edwina becomes the focus of Anthony Bridgerton’s search for a wife – the central storyline in season two.

Exciting: Filming of Bridgerton’s second series has begun – and the show’s new leading lady Simone Ashley (pictured) is making her presence felt

Intriguingly, though, Miss Ashley was pictured on the set at a polo ground in Berkshire next to Jonathan Bailey, 33, who stars as rakish Anthony.

And because this is the show known as Bonkerton – thanks to the sheer number of sex scenes – there simply must be something going on between them.

Indeed, the Julia Quinn book on which the second series is based, The Viscount Who Loved Me, suggests the chemistry between the pair on this chilly day of filming is already fizzing.

New character: The actress, 26, plays Regency society siren Kate Sharma, whose younger half-sister Edwina becomes the focus of Anthony Bridgerton’s search for a wife

 Rising star: Bridgerton is Miss Ashley’s biggest acting job to date

Newcomer: Dressed in a striking peacock blue gown, Simone Ashley was spotted in a crowd scene set at Royal Ascot

Romance: And because this is the show known as Bonkerton – thanks to the sheer number of sex scenes – there simply must be something going on between them

In the romantic novel, Kate and Anthony spar as he tries to secure Edwina’s hand – tension that leads, naturally, to the adversaries falling madly in love with one another.

The show’s creator Chris Van Dusen promised viewers a love story ‘as sweeping and moving and as beautiful as viewers have come to expect’. 

The first season focused on the romance between Daphne Bridgerton, played by Phoebe Dynevor, and Simon, Duke of Hastings, the role which Rege-Jean Page bade farewell to last month – to the dismay of his many fans.

Suave: Jonathan looked smart in a black suit and wore a matching hat as he filmed the new scenes 

In character: Simone looked lovely in the blue dress and wore a purple flower in her hair to complete her outfit 

Day out: The cast were seated in stands as they watched the horses at the event which was being filmed in Berkshire

Reunited: Other known cast members were spotted in the crowd. Luke Newton (Colin Bridgerton), Luke Thompson (Benedict Bridgerton), Claudia Jessie (Eloise Bridgerton), Ruth Gemmell (Lady Violet Bridgerton) and Adjoa Andoh (Lady Danbury) could all be seen cheering on the race horses as they ran past

Cast: Phoebe Dynevor who plays the main character Daphne was not seen filming this week’s Royal Ascot scene

Bridgerton is Miss Ashley’s biggest acting job to date. She is best known for another Netflix hit, Sex Education, about the romantic exploits of a group of teenagers, and ITV thriller The Sister.

She was born in Surrey to Indian Tamil parents and studied at the Redroofs Theatre School in Maidenhead, Berkshire.

Netflix said: ‘Kate is a smart, headstrong young woman who suffers no fools – Anthony Bridgerton very much included.’

Star: Bridgerton is Miss Ashley’s biggest acting job to date. She is best known for another Netflix hit, Sex Education, about the romantic exploits of a group of teenagers

Actress: Simone was born in Surrey to Indian Tamil parents and studied at the Redroofs Theatre School in Maidenhead, Berkshire

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