Nicola Coughlan Speaks Out About Concerns Over Bridgerton's "Color-Blind" Casting

Bridgerton star Nicola Coughlan opened up about the Netflix show's diverse cast and explained how she sees her series as similar to Game of Thrones.

By Ryan Gajewski Jan 13, 2021 4:08 AMTags
Watch: Where You've Seen the Stars of "Bridgerton" Before

Nicola Coughlan hopes that Bridgerton will forever help to change the way people think about period pieces.

The actress, who stars as Penelope Featherington on the hit Netflix drama series, appeared on British daytime talk show This Morning on Tuesday, Jan. 12. During the visit, Nicola explained that her conversation with co-star Adjoa Andoh helped her to understand the importance of how their show handled casting people of color.

"I'm speaking to Adjoa Andoh ... who's brilliant as Lady Danbury," she said. "I said, 'Color-blind casting, it's great, it's totally the right thing.' And she said, 'Well, it's not, in a way, because it sort of erases race and erases people's struggles.' And I thought, That had never occurred to me, never. And I think the world that we have created is a completely reimagined world, is a fantasy."

Regardless of how it became what it is, Nicola is proud that audiences have clearly embraced the vision of the show that is based on the book series by Julia Quinn and also stars Regé-Jean Page as Simon, the Duke of Hastings and Phoebe Dynevor as Daphne Bridgerton.

"I would say to people, 'You can watch Game of Thrones, and you can completely suspend your disbelief that there are dragons in this world,'" she continued. "For Bridgerton, you can suspend your disbelief that we have a black queen and a black duke, and they're the most fantastic actors."

See the Bridgerton Cast's Behind-the-Scenes Photos

She added, "And I'm so proud of it, and the reaction that we've had is just really heartening, and I hope that it will be a benchmark for what period dramas can be in terms of diversity."

This is not the first time that Nicola expressed admiration for the show's inclusivity. After the Netflix Queue account tweeted on Jan. 4 that 63 million households had watched the series in its first four weeks, the 34-year-old Derry Girls alum added, "You know the way some people were like ‘Diversity in period drama doesn't work'....63 million households thought it did tho so [skull head emoji]."