You'll likely know the second season of Netflix's sauciest period drama Bridgerton is out in just a few weeks.
The first series was watched by a record-breaking 82 million households the month, only beaten by Squid Game (which garnered 111 million household views last September).
This season follows the journey of Lord Anthony Bridgerton, the oldest Bridgerton brother, played by actor Jonathan Bailey. While interviewing about the new series, he spoke about his character's toxic masculinity, laughter on set - and a rather key prop used by the actors to make sure sex scenes feel, ahem, realistic.
The steamier scenes are actually directed by a specialist intimacy coordinator, Elizabeth Talbot, who utilised the use of props to make sure actors were comfortable filming certain scenes.
One of the show’s best kept secrets? That a deflated netball actually stands in to look like a man's you-know-what fairly regularly.
Bailey said in an interview with Radio Times: “It’s amazing how that whole industry has just come on, even in a year. There are new tricks to the trade [like] little cushions, and it’s amazing what you can do with a half-inflated netball."
“If there are two people doing a sex scene, the rule is they must have three barriers separating them. And there are certain acts where a half-inflated netball can allow for movement without having to connect physically."
He also went on to touch on the main plotlines his character tackles this season - hinting that toxic masculinity and how it affects those around you is an overarching theme.
“It’s interesting to get behind these Heathcliff and Darcy characters and explore why romantic male figures are so harsh and toxic towards women,” he shares.
Charithra Chandran plays Edwina Sharma in the series, one of his love interests.
On getting the part, Chandran said: “I had a job offer at a company and they offered me a year out, to travel or do a Master’s. I thought: ‘I’m going to use this year and get all the acting out of my system and then I can settle into the 60-hour-a-week job."
“Six months later, the pandemic happened. But before that, I’d had the best six months of my life doing local theatre and short films. Something clicked - I had finally found my purpose.”
As an actor of Indian descent, she “knew there would be fewer roles open to me”, adding: “Bridgerton totally changed that.”
Bridgerton returns on March 25.
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Ally Head is Marie Claire UK's Health, Sustainability, and Relationships Editor, eight-time marathoner, and Boston Qualifying runner. Day-to-day, she works across site strategy, features, and e-commerce, reporting on the latest health updates, writing the must-read health and wellness content, and rounding up the genuinely sustainable and squat-proof gym leggings worth *adding to basket*. She regularly hosts panels and presents for things like the MC Sustainability Awards, has an Optimum Nutrition qualification, and saw nine million total impressions on the January 2023 Wellness Issue she oversaw, with health page views up 98% year on year, too. Follow Ally on Instagram for more or get in touch.
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