The Real Reason Bridgerton Season 4 Won't Be Released Until 2026

The Real Reason Bridgerton Season 4 Won't Be Released Until 2026
Image credit: Netflix

Netflix seems to be asking too much of the crew. Is that why Season 3 failed?


  • Showrunner Bridgerton has announced that Season 4 will take two years to produce.
  • However, no external factors are affecting the process.
  • The reason, according to Shonda Rhimes, is Netflix.

Following the high ratings and critical acclaim of the first two seasons of Bridgerton, Netflix renewed it for a third and fourth season back in 2021. In the meantime, of course, there were a number of external events that slowed down the production process, including Covid-19 and the Hollywood labor dispute of 2023, so the third season didn't arrive until two years after the second season premiered and three years after it was announced.

No one expected that to happen again. No, fortunately we are not facing another strike that could effectively freeze the entire television industry, but still, according to the latest reports, we will have to make do with the existing seasons and reread the books for another two years while Season 4 is in production. But what's the reason?

Bridgerton Showrunner on the Process of Producing New Season

The gap between the release of the first two seasons of Bridgerton was one year and three months, but pre-production for Season 2 began long before the release of Season 1. In total, filming took about eight months, but only because of a Covid-19 shutdown.

As for Season 3, the long wait was caused by both the aftermath of the pandemic and the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. As a result, principal photography wrapped last year and took exactly eight months to complete. And let's not forget that Netflix released Shonda Rhimes' personal project, the prequel spinoff Queen Charlotte, between the second and third seasons. So without the unnecessary prequel, we might have gotten Colin and Penelope's story much earlier.

The Real Reason Bridgerton Season 4 Won't Be Released Until 2026 - image 1

It seems that in the current climate, there's nothing stopping the 4th season of Bridgerton from coming out in a year and a half, as was the case with the second season. Except, according to the showrunner, the team is counting on a crazy two years of production:

'We are working to try and put the seasons out more quickly, but they do take eight months to film and then they have to be edited, and then they have to be dubbed into every language. And the writing takes a very long time as well, so we're kind of on a two-year pace, we're trying to speed up, but somewhere in that range.'

Shonda Rhimes on Why the Production Can't Be Optimized

We have no intention of devaluing the hard work of the people who create one of the best shows on Netflix. But it is impossible not to wonder why the writers have not had time to prepare the script for next season? Bridgerton executive producer Shonda Rhimes may have the answer:

'[Netflix wants] to write everything, and then they want to shoot everything, which is — it's very counterintuitive to the way I learned to make television. It takes so long, and that's frustrating to me. To me, we should be able to write and produce shows at the same time, and that’s not necessarily possible at this moment. It should be, but it's not.'

Shonda's words reveal just how much the production team is being overworked by Netflix. The situation is reminiscent of the Disney+ streaming frenzy, where executives demanded that writers and VFX execs redo many scenes at the last minute with no prior preparation. The result was burnout, increased dissatisfaction and, of course, a decline in the quality of the content offered.

We hope that the Bridgerton team will not be forced into the same rigid framework. After all, we are willing to wait two or even three years as long as the writers do a great job of fixing the mistakes of Season 3.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, Variety.