Image Credit: Netflix

I Investigated Why TF We Got A Brand New Francesca In 'Bridgerton' Season 3

The first part of Bridgerton season 3 has left me with so many questions. Where is my slow burn, friends-to-lovers situation? How do I acquire a carriage for hookups? And why the fuck is Francesca literally a different person this season? What happened to Ruby Stokes, the actress who used to play her? It’s always a bit jarring when they replace actors on shows… I vividly remember the jumpscare of Noah Contineo replacing Jake T. Austin in The Fosters back in 2015. But honestly, Hannah Dodd is so fantastic as Francesca that this recasting bothers me less. Her chemistry with Victor Alli, who plays Lord John Stirling, is truly everything.

Obviously, I needed to get to the bottom of this unexpected Francesca swap. I put on my detective hat, grabbed my internet sleuthing gear (a bag of potato chips and a blanket), and got to work. Here’s why Ruby left Bridgerton and got replaced by Hannah.

Why Did Ruby Stokes Leave Bridgerton?

Ruby Stokes
Image Credit: Getty

Ruby Stokes was the OG Francesca, so we were all a touch thrown to see a brand new actress playing the role in season 3. Basically, she took a page out of Regé-Jean Page’s book and left for ~bigger and better~ things. Yes, this is sarcasm. Regé-Jean hasn’t done a whole lot since his own exit and Ruby, well, left to star in a show that has since been canceled. She said goodbye to Bridgerton after scoring a lead role in the Netflix adaptation of Lockwood & Co, but that series only lasted one season, RIP. With Francesca at the center of season 3, I’m guessing Ruby has some regrets now.

Apparently, Francesca was also supposed to be a main character in season 2, but Ruby had to leave for Lockwood & Co. pretty early on. She told Variety, “It wasn’t an easy decision. But it was incredible being part of a cultural moment like Bridgerton.” I can’t lie, this reminds me of all those pop girlies who turned down “The Middle” and had to watch it become the biggest hit of 2018.

How Does Hannah Dodd Feel About Replacing Ruby Stokes On Bridgerton?

Hannah Dodd
Image Credit: Getty

The actress was understandably stressed about joining the cast for season 3 and replacing someone else. She told People that she was “really nervous,” but luckily, everyone was welcoming. “I was having banter with them in the green room on my first day, and now I can’t imagine not knowing any of them,” Hannah said, adding, “It’s the weirdest idea that I wouldn’t know them.” Aw, I love that for her.

Ilana Frost
Ilana Frost
Ilana Frost is an entertainment writer at Betches. As a teenage girl in her twenties, she spends her time stanning Olivia Rodrigo, baking cakes for award shows, and refusing to ever leave her Reputation era.