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May 5, 2022 45 mins

Simone Ashley (Kate Sharma) and Tom Verica, director and Head of Creative Production at Shondaland walk host Gabrielle Collins through the pivotal turning point of the season, Episode 5, “An Unthinkable Fate.” Our guests explore the continuous increase of tension through Kate and Anthony’s relationship and the tumultuous dinner scene at the Bridgerton estate. 

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:00):
Bridgerton The Official Podcast is a partnership between Shondaland Audio
and iHeartRadio. Welcome to Bridgerton the Official Podcast, your exclusive
peak behind the curtain of Shondaland's Bridgerton series. And before
we meet our guests this week, here's a brief recap
of episode two oh five and Unthinkable Fate. Edwina and

(00:20):
Anthony are engaged and Kate suffers through a torturous wedding
prep awaiting the arrival of Lord and Lady Sheffield. Then,
during a tumultuous dinner, Edwina learns the truth about Kate's
plans to marry her off. Joining host Gabrielle Collins this
week are Simone Ashley, who plays Kate Charma, and Tom Verica,
director and head of creative production at Shondaland. Hi Simone,

(00:45):
Welcome to Bridgeton the Official Podcast. Thank you, thanks for
having me. Very excited to be chasting with you. Oh,
We're really excited to be chatting with you. There's so
much to cover. I have so many thoughts, emotions and
all of the above about the character that you played
and your performance. But first, like, what have you been

(01:09):
up to, What's what's new? What's new in Simon's world?
Lots is new. I feel like every week at the moment,
there's something new. We've been doing pressed for the show,
which has been really exciting. We did this really cool
fan events and I got to see Nicola and Golden
and Charifa on Zoom and yeah, it was kind of

(01:29):
the first time I did a bit of press with them,
which was really exciting to kind of see the boss
women doing their thing. Nice. Yeah, and just what else
is new? I guess I'm just reading a lot of
scripts at the moment, taking a few meetings which is
really exciting. A few things bubbling in the background. Tom Verica, director,

(01:56):
actor and head of creative production at chandaland thank you
so much for joining us. Well, I'm honored and I
loved talking about the show and everything about it and
how we do it. So you made it very easy
first season, so hopefully this will go, if not a
little bit better. When I spoke with you last season,
I was able to see and understand more about the

(02:20):
decision making and Shondaland and just kick off with you know,
talking about how did you feel about the backstories? I mean, oh,
I loved it, I think and they I felt these
two episodes in particular, and I felt very lucky that
there was quite a bit of shifting, you know that
the table was basically set coming into these things, and

(02:42):
these were both, in their own ways, very juicy turns
in characters and stories. And finally kind of that revelation
of the public awareness of what was going down with
the wedding at the end of six. Yeah, so it
was more internal. It was definitely more the family implosion
that happens in five at the dinner table and uh,

(03:05):
and much gets revealed there and really kind of lays
out how is this going to feed into the ceremony
that's been planned that people are gearing up for, and
how is that going to play out? So it's ratcheting
up that tension that ultimately kind of reveals itself and
comes out in a very public way, and then they

(03:26):
fall out from that. It kind of like implodes at
the dinner table and leading up to it. And then
there are also moments where I early on in the
in the season, I see the foreshadowing of like, Okay,
the Queen is throwing some shade at Mary Sharma. You know, what,
what are we going to get into here? And for
those who have not read the book and who have
read the book like it's it's not exactly what Julia wrote,

(03:50):
it's it's very different. Yes, it is very different. So um, well,
the queen element, the queen element really brings another aspect
that was not in the books but amplifies it in
a way. And these characters in a story that you
know that embrace all those elements. And once you know
the true fans of the book realize that this this

(04:11):
medium offers a nice kind of refreshing way to bring
that out, does change certain things. But those core elements
of the books and what Julia had written are there,
and the characters are are well defined as she used
laid them out. We had the privilege of speaking with
director Alex Play and he spoke quite a bit about

(04:35):
your heritage and bringing that to the table. Did you
feel at any point that you were able to like
infuse your character with some of that backstory again and
like authenticity and having sharing that with you and Sharifa, Actually,
what do you have to say about that? I think
it's amazing. It is amazing. There are many scenes show

(05:01):
that I watched and I'm like, wow, you've never really
seen a moment like that on television, let alone in
a period drama. It felt very normal and liberating, and
I think that's what was so powerful on that set,
was how normal it felt and how much fun it felt.
I actually going back to the tea scene because Kate
kind of had her little faschet of cardamon and clothes

(05:24):
and she picks out the spices and puts it in
the tea strainer. And I remember doing that scene with
Alex and he was very sweet, like you could tell
it was a moment that made him very proud. He
was very very into it, and I remember him kneeling
with me and we were kind of like discussing the
tea and all that, and like fine, he was very
like he wanted it to be as authentic as possible

(05:46):
and wanted the right spices and all of these things.
So yeah, I mean, I guess it's just really heartwarming.
It's just really nice for it to be normal. And
I grew up between London and call Fornia, so I was,
you know, I was always I was quite westernized, I guess,
and I was talking ed, but I always I remember

(06:08):
when I was a kid, like growing up listening to
different songs or things that my mum would tell me,
And for the first time ever, I had someone that
I could share all that with, and that was Teresra
just even just like you know, passing comments and it'd
be like, oh my god, I know what you mean,
or I know what that means, or I've heard that too,
or I know what that word means. And it was

(06:29):
incredible to be doing that at work with someone so
really nice. The show's really brought people together. I remember
filming the Sheffield's dinner scene. I think it was Johnny
you mentioned something something to do with Indian culture, and
then there was a moment where Teresa started singing a

(06:52):
song or something in tumil and everyone was kind of
like and it it was with other people as well,
and it was really faun and joyous, and everyone was
kind of just watching them on set. And I turned
to Johnny and I was like laughing because I was
just so like, can't believe it was happening right now,
and he like like giddy, yeah, and me and Johnny

(07:12):
last all the time, but I was just kind of like,
this has made my day. Yeah, those are the things
that make it all worthwhile, you know. Yeah, that's really
really special, I think, So what about the scharmas speaks
to the larger goal if there is one of the
season For instance, I listened to an interview with Sharithra

(07:35):
and she said that the Scharmas, in her perspective, were
kind of like the audiences who are watching Bridgeton. They're
just kind of being introduced to this world again. They're
just kind of being plopped in and having to find
their way their place. What did you want to bring
out about their backstory and what excited you about laying
with this new group of characters this season. Well, that's

(07:58):
exactly it is. Is the new family that moves to town,
which is kind of a universal story, and how they
adapt and adjust and what their motivation is, the pressures
of adapting to this is society and what that holds,
the judgments, the growing pains, what their mission is and

(08:19):
what their desires to marry off at Weena. And as
we learn later, Kate has has made kind of a
deal in order to gain family fortune in doing this
that she has not shared with other family members. So
that's not unlike certain families that that withhold certain things
that come back to blow up in their face, But

(08:41):
it was really the taking that journey into a world
that we already know, but really through fresh eyes and
through the prism of how they jump into this being
a new family from another country, of dealing with society,
and we very quickly are fallen into the usual marriage
martin that usually goes, and some new people step onto

(09:02):
the scene and that kind of creates this this little
explosion that has a ripple effect to the viewers taking
this journey with them, as even though the viewer may
have some idea about how these things go where they
end up, it's quite a different situation than than season one.
That's part of the exciting part of that journey. Yeah,
for me personally as if viewer, it really amped up

(09:25):
the drama. Yeah, the first season, I'm like, okay, there's
there's drama and getting caught outside in the courtyard with
someone's hand up your skirt. But this was like family drama.
This was on another is very relatable sister, you know,
ye tight sisters, a mother who's who's you know, going

(09:46):
through her own issues, trying to do better for her
daughters and do a new place. So there is a
lot more family drama with this dynamic and then certainly
the continuing one with the Bridger Tins and they're struggled
to deal and cope with not having the patriarch who
had passed away. We get a little bit of insight
into that backstory, which is also delicious and so good.

(10:08):
How Violet has to that it's a constant navigating for her,
and as each child comes of age to a certain
point and you know, teaching them and raising them, those
are enormous challenges. And it's very layered. I mean each
character Lady Danburry and how this has an impact on
her with her her former you know, having a relationship

(10:30):
with the Mary character from before. So there's a lot
of layers that really introduce new challenges for each of
these characters. You all had to maintain this world while
also making it different. We'll be right back, Welcome back

(10:53):
to Bridgerton the Official Podcast. So one of the things
I held onto from our last conversation last season was
you talked about wanting to sink your teeth into this
idea of longing and emotional turmoil, and I with all
the backstory that's happening this season, I wondered if that

(11:15):
was something you found yourself gravitating to again. Yeah, absolutely,
I believe the longing and what I call digging my
teeth into that, it really becomes the mechanism I think
of this series and what I think is what it's
pivotal to tapping into those emotions and how two people

(11:35):
come together when there are numerous barriers and obstacles preventing
them from doing so, whether it's societal commentation on that
or familial situations that prevent two people from coming together.
And I think that's what that journeying, that process and
that exploration, certainly as a visual storyteller, is something I

(11:57):
really look forward to and really finding those nuances, whether
it's a touch of a hand, whether it's a glance
across the room, whether it's you know, exploring any kind
of situation that physically tells that story of two people
who are fighting not to be together but want to
be together, or whatever the situation arises the natural attraction

(12:19):
that another couple might have. I think that is a
very exciting moments to explore and try out, and we
do that through I have images, I have ideas, the
actors have their ideas. Chris will have some very specific
thoughts about it. And then once we kind of get
into the rehearsal process, we kind of it truly does

(12:41):
work as a collaboration so that the actors can make
it organic and really kind of find a natural way
to achieve what we're doing. And we oftentimes felt, particularly
in this season, between Anthony and Kate, the numerous times
that they come together and they're looking at one another,
what might seemingly be similar beats on the page are

(13:05):
really nuanced with what the previous one was and how
there's a slight escalation between the previous moment, what is
new about this one? And that's that's really kind of
thrilling as a director to be able to navigate and
build kind of that foundation which gets us ultimately to
where they end up. Okay, So I'll just be honest,

(13:25):
every time I saw Anthony and Kate together, I got
very annoyed, Like I'm like, just do the thing. Just
go in the corner of the library, do what you
gotta do, get it out, and I but it was
just so much, so much build up, And I guess
that is why the kiss it is a tremendous build up,

(13:46):
and that's um, it's the bit of the tease but
I say that in a light way because it has
to be ground in story as to why they can't
do it just yet or to what they're respective inner
conflicts are. And that's where Chris and I being able
to talk through these moments so that when we discuss

(14:09):
a sequence where they are alone together and they find
themselves in a moment, what is different about this one?
What specifically are we trying to get to to get
to the next beat and not just a stall, but
a real genuine what the character is going through in
this moment and the decision making and the risks that

(14:29):
are involved. If they were allowed themselves. Need I remind you, sir,
if anyone other than your sister discovered us in the
library that night, then we two would be obliged to
anything happened in that library. There were the two of
us being obliged to marry and be the outcome you design.
Of course, then let us supposed to be glad we
have avoided such an unthinkable thing. I don't think he

(14:52):
realizes it, but I think he's wrestling and fighting with
that thing that ultimately starts to take the want creeping
up from a very deep place that he's never shown
or revealed before his suppressing of that and that revelation,
that little window in that moment of that vulnerability is
such a It really kind of captures everyone when they

(15:12):
see that moment. And I thought, he just performed that beautifully.
That he did, and the two of you together working
together in his performance and the choices he made in
camera movement. It was after the dinner actually, and he's
talking to Kate and over one shoulder he's like, you're

(15:36):
the bane of my existence, and then it swings over
to the other. I was like, that's exactly right. Look
at you, Gabby, Look at your Gabby, Tom Erica. Ladies
and gentlemen, you were the bane of my existence and

(15:56):
the jack of oh my desires. That was really beautiful.
Oh thanks, And that was again, how do we shoot
this scene? The two of them kind of batting heads
but yet escalating kind of their dilemma and they're accepting
their attraction towards one another and that inner battle, that

(16:16):
inner conflict of duty and wants and desires, and so
that was a very clear working with the choreography of
our cameraman of when to sort of switch to the
other side of that and playing this line that's constantly
crossing into what I want and then know what I
have to do. I remember we went hand and held

(16:37):
that to bring that sort of that palpable tension that's
existing between the two of them. Yeah, that was such
a fun I mean that was I specifically remember doing
that scene, and we all just felt very pleased when
we came out of there achieving what setting out what
we wanted to do. Did you go in there thinking
I want to do this and played around with it

(16:59):
and got to the point of doing the handheld? I
knew going in I wanted to do that handheld just
because I knew what the stakes were in that moment,
particularly coming off of the dinner table scene where there
was so much pomp and circumstance, you know, so much
proper and uh you know, holes being punched into this
formal world that when it became just a two of
them that I really wanted to show that sort of

(17:21):
you know, they're having a real heart to heart that
was in contrast to what the dinner table scene was.
And then the them hiding in this room off the hallway,
bringing that element of danger and potential to just grab
each other right then in that moment and get it
on you. So I always wanted that sort of that

(17:43):
possibility to exist as they and we played with how
close they came together and how you know, but so
I knew, you know, we we again, we worked it
out with the actors when these moments and maybe this
happens slightly a bit later, maybe you step in a
little bit sooner, and we really play with that comfortableness
of being so close to one another. And you know,
I knew how we are going to approach going in.

(18:04):
But you have to iron out those moments so that
everyone kind of embodies them and gets behind gets behind them.
Your visual storytelling is the thing that takes me out
of like wanting to shake them both. It's those visual moments, though,
that that allow me to be like, Okay, I can
I can let this this will they won't they play

(18:26):
out a little longer? Well, that's good because that's the
challenge is to how you hold that off that people
are gonna be like, oh, just enough, how do you
hold it off and tent it up? And yeah, and
that's just the challenge. It's just challenge for us to
not just it's not just sort of saying all right,
we'll just get a close up of you here and
a close up of you here, because then it is
going to feel like every other scene. That's where again

(18:48):
I say we elevate that intimacy, whether it's getting slightly
closer and much more impressionistic, because we're getting more into
the psychology of Kate and Anthony, and if it's told
from one of their perspective, what are they seeing in
the other and how do we highlight those moments. This
couple has their own journey and their own path and

(19:10):
how they get there. And she, you know, such a
breath of fresh air, what this character brings, and the
strength and the pillar that she comes in with, and
how fiery she is and kind of neglecting her own
needs that slowly start to chip away, so that yes,
she's carrying all of that. So it's really it's a

(19:32):
wonderfully complex struggle, an inner conflict as to the protection
of her sister, being supportive the family plan, but having
to deal with feelings that she's never dealt before about
a particular person who frustrates the hell out of her.
It wasn't difficult to portray that enemies kind of trope

(19:54):
that whole you know, you just grind my gears, you
vex me kind of thing. Not because I it came
from a place of animosity. I think that those strong
feelings have to come from somewhere, and that was, you know,
that magnetism that they have for one another. And I
think it's I don't know if it's because they can't

(20:14):
have each other and because they've never met anyone like
that in their lives before. It was a joy, It
was amazing. It was effortless, to be honest, though there
were many times we had conversations with each other and
rehearsals discussing ideas of the scene that we might be doing.
I think a lot of it was unspoken as well,
and it was effortless to kind of work with each other.

(20:37):
I think we just kind of think from that sense,
and the actors as they kind of work through that
process as well. It's fun being able to explore and try.
You know, we will have takes where we may push
it a little bit more and then dial it back,
and then certainly when we get in the editing room,
we can calibrate a little bit of what where we
know it's going, what we already have, maybe dialing down

(20:59):
a little bit. You're of a dialogue it up there.
You know, we really have a kind of blessing to
be able to have explored all those roads, to be
able to play and you know, really craft those situations.
For example, when she first has encounters with Anthony, she
doesn't like following the rules of following a herd anyway.
And I think she is a very worldly, experienced woman,

(21:20):
and she has got very admirable values in life. She
comes from a very complicated background. She knows that the
best values in life are love and a supportive family
and non materialistic things. And I think when she first
meets the Viscount, I think she judges him and she's like, oh, well,
you're very SuperSpecial and materialistic, and you know what you're doing,

(21:43):
and you're very charming and all of these things. And
I don't want to be like the other women that
just fall at your knees. And I think she's also
maybe denying a little bit to herself that she is
falling at her knees for him a bit. And that's
why at the start, she doesn't really express how she's
feeling to anyone, and she's very she you noticed she

(22:04):
doesn't express to anyone really only in small amounts her
opinion of him or how she feels, and any reaction
she has to him as kind of to herself, because
I think she's also in part denying it to herself
as well. But all of those things were influenced because
it was I would take a scene and be like, well,
this is a woman that has her, you know, very
strong stakes at hand, and that is to take care

(22:27):
of her family, and it's almost like an act of survival.
And a woman on a mission like that isn't going
to meet a viscount and just fall at her knees immediately.
That it's going to take a lot. So yeah, I
think there were many moments before I think in scenes
that for me, it was that continuous heartbeat of like,
you know, putting family first, and that influenced my choices
with her in a scene, and I think especially at

(22:49):
the beginning, that really influenced everything that Kate did in
a scene and how she reacted. Does Anthony have a
willingness to grow technically? I don't think he's aware of it.
I think he's again, I think duty and honor are
the things that that drive him. It's all he's ever known.
Providing certainly filling in for uh, for his father and

(23:13):
serving that role in the family is his duty. You know,
someone may disagree, but I don't think he has dreams
in the sense that what are his wants and his needs?
I think it really is just about filling out what
is being the provider and that's he's kind of locked
in that mode until he's I think somebody just crosses
his path that he just cannot take his attention off

(23:35):
of and it forces him to deal in a way,
and as it gets revealed later in this season, to
deal with those things of who he is and what
are what are his wants as an individual. Yeah, there's
just a knee jerk and a societal norm about how
one behaves and and really kind of protection of family
members and particularly this family coming into a new world

(23:57):
with with a you know, a mission in place. Both
of them being elder siblings, they have shared responsibility that
kind of put some on common ground that is really
focused on other family members and not so much what
they're going through because they're so used to kind of
doing what their duty is. And it's in that I
think finding themselves in these situations and finding these moments

(24:23):
between their responsibilities and having that slowly sort of involved
and see what it unveils is is kind of the
aspect of it. I think Kate, she's had a complicated history,
and much like Anthony, has had a lot of responsibility
and pressure put on her shoulders to take care of
her family. It's kind of twofold that her having this

(24:47):
strong love for her stepsister and her stepmom and take
care of the family, and that makes her feel good.
But also I think she's also probably running away from
her own problems and dealing with her own traumas or issues,
and I think all of that kind of brings her
to the end of the scale where she's not really

(25:07):
taking care of herself and thinking honestly what it is
that she wants. I think that affects her decisions quite
a lot, and I think it then goes a little
bit too far and she ends up hurting the people
that she only meant to protect. In the end, if
I could give advice to Kate, if I was her friends,
it would be you know, slow down. Lady Danbury does
it so brilliantly at the beginning, the amount of time

(25:30):
she lectures her and warns her, and she's like, you know,
you're you're going to take this too far if you
don't stop and listen to yourself about be honest with
yourself and therefore be honest with the people around you.
You know, Kate, being quite stubborn as she is, she
only really realizes what Lady Danbury was advising all along

(25:51):
until maybe when it all peeps a little bit. Oh
my goodness, you just reminded me about all the Danbury
and Kate scenes. That is, there was so much that
happened with your character. Oh my goodness. My absolute favorite
moment is the moment when she tells you that you
can't be her, that she has lived and she has loved.

(26:12):
That is my favorite. Do you have a favorite moment
between Kate and Danbury. I there's a scene, I think
it's an episode four where Kate's up she can't sleep
and she's on the balcony at Aubury Hall and Lady
Danbury comes and she's like, what are you doing up?
It's kind of like that peak moment where she's like,

(26:33):
you really need to be honest with yourself right now,
because I sent bad mute coming. If you let us
go too far. I loved that scene with her you
must tell her how you feel about my dislike for
the Viscount, about whatever it is you feel. I also

(26:58):
loved the scene an episode one where Kate's kind of
caught red handed riding alone without a maid and being
kind of dishonest with her intentions of coming to London,
and Lady Dambrey has the letter from the Sheffields kind
of like Kate's caught red handed, and that's kind of
what brings them to together. It's very unexpected. I don't

(27:20):
think Kate expected that at all this journey to London.
I think almost in an arrogant way, she came into
London thinking this will be easy. I'm Kate, I'm always
in charge of my family. I'm very smart, I'm always right,
I'm very you know, calculated with all these things, and
no one's going to stop me. And she's and then
she kind of meets her match with Lady Dambree and

(27:40):
she's like, WHOA, Okay, this is going to be a
bit more difficult than I thought it was. Simone told
a lot of story through her eyes I felt, and
I mean like her eyes just said it all. And
I just felt like By episode five and six, she
was a little more bold in not really holding back

(28:01):
how she was feeling. I mean, as she was coming
down the aisle with the bouquet when she dropped the
Bengals at the altar, right, yeah, I was just very
very bold, very bold. I was wondering why you had
Simone looking into the mirror at herself during the Holly
ceremony And was that written in the script or was

(28:23):
that something you and Simone worked on together. And I
mean I have my ideas about what she was doing there,
but why did you guys do that? Oh good, I
really want to hear what your idea was and hopefully
it well let's hear, yeah, let's hear what you're feeling.
Was well, I was wondering if she was trying to

(28:44):
live vicariously through Edwina, like if she was just trying
to see herself like almost, yeah, she's going through the
motions with her sister, but she's also at the same
time putting her self in her sister's shoes. It is
I think You're absolutely right. I think is she just

(29:05):
she's caught up in the moment of caring for her
you know, calming her sister's nerves and talking her through
and obviously dealing with her internal struggle about how she
feels about Anthony. And I think it's just a moment
where she kind of catches herself in the mirror and
by seeing the paste on her cheek. You're absolutely right.
I think there's that moment of being caught of WHOA,

(29:27):
what if this is the ceremony for me? What if
I was in her shoes and I kind of am
envious or kind of want to be in that position.
Then she shakes herself out of that moment. But that's
it's all those things. I mean, there's a lot in
that moment, not a vanity thing, but but kind of
really the mirror reflecting back as to uh, you know

(29:48):
how she kind of wishes that it would be her
in that moment. That's kind of a you know, this
has this moment passed her by in her life. As
we're talking about it, I realized that's such a very
raw yea, like one of those things you would never
tell anybody that you're doing or feeling like that's so raw,
you know. Um, And we're seeing that it's a private,
a quick, private moment that no one else catches, but

(30:09):
it's really just a little bit of you know, it's
a moment in time that just really pops for that
individual who happened to catch her and image of herself
and how she looked a little bit of a sobering,
sobering moment looks can be powerful on it, but also
fleeting displays of near passion, perhaps nothing more so. The
Viscount feels little passion for me, of course. Not what

(30:32):
I mean to say is that true love is something
else entirely you know, jumping in, you know, with the
holiday ceremony, the explosion that that was such a that
was such a freshness. So we did quite a bit
of research and had some advisors and of course our
actors had various connections to their own versions of holiday
ceremony that was a modern day that had some elements

(30:54):
of historical nature. So we we rehearsed that and talked
through exactly what that was going to look like and
what the feeling was that we wanted, and you know,
and where we took certain liberties that needed to be
for story points that didn't really kind of go too
far off but really kind of kept it with this
bond of these two daughters and mothers and really wanted

(31:14):
to make it a very personal experience for the three
of them. And so that was a lot of fun.
I mean that was something very new. I had never
filmed something, you know, like a holiday ceremony before. So
the holiday ceremony. Yeah. So I remember watching it and
it's just an a It looked so beautiful and I

(31:35):
loved that there's a little cutaway of meat and involved
in it all. And I remember doing that scene with
Tom and we were doing the kind of initial shops,
the establishing shops, mixing the marboo which is like dough,
which is what they're spreading on each other. And I
was talking to Tom and I was like, Oh, this
is how my mom used to do it. And she

(31:55):
would kind of get the flower and then put it
in make a little well and mix it from the
will and stuff. And Tom was like, do that Like,
I love that it's personal to you. I mean, God,
even saying that out loud, like, I never really thought
I'd be on a set doing that, So it's incredible.
Even saying out loud, it makes the emotional. I never
really thought that I'd ever sleep speaking about it, or

(32:18):
that would be a part of my work on a
period drama. And you know I've said this in many interviews.
Actually I learned a lot from Terethra. I think she
really grew up in a very enriched Indian culture that
gives it the authenticity of something very different that's a
you know, a different part of the world. And how
these these two tracks are coming, you know, clashing, especially

(32:42):
as we intercut that with the boys Bachelor get together. Yeah,
I noticed the your choices in camera movement there as well.
It was originally there were just two separate scenes. It
was one whole scene and then another whole scene. And
I pitched to Chris about one of the show him
a version where I intercut it because I thought it

(33:03):
might have a nice dynamic going back and forth, and
he right away really really responded to that, so that
I was quite I just had a very specific idea
once I got into filming these, to be able to
intercut these, to really kind of echo and drive home
what's happening both with Kate and Anthony in their respective

(33:24):
environments and the internal dialogue that becomes a thread. So
he really he responded right away and loved it. So
I'm happy that that stayed, I do wonder whether this
blessing would be greater if if I count were here
to participate as well. Oh, I'm certain Lord Bridgeton has
his own wedding traditions to perform to besting. Huh, yeah,

(33:45):
here you do love floating about your victories. Do you
know a brother? Yeah, it felt like two worlds literally,
two trains, kind of two trains better running. Yeah, run,
and it really did, it really did. And the shooting
style of both of those um separate rooms, so to say,

(34:05):
they just had like this swing feel that felt like
um excitement also a little bit of drunkenness. I wondered
how how high the proof was there Bourbon. There was
a week experimented. There was some that was a little
bit more more off off off kilter than we were.

(34:27):
But yeah, we found a place that that felt right
into that world and then a little bit more of
the classic movement in the halty ceremony world. So that
was that was definitely designed. We'll be back after the break.
Welcome back. Let's return to the conversation with Simone Ashley
and Tom Verica. Could you talk to us about filming

(34:51):
the dinner scene. I'll say it's like one of my
top three moments. I had to rewind it and watch
it again and again and again. U. I loved it
so much. It's like it popped off. Yeah, it pops
off emotionally kind of entering. So that scene I made
a choice that Kate was just sick with anxiety because

(35:12):
it's a secret that she's been keeping for so long
and she's about to get found out and it's kind
of the worst nightmare for her for these people to
be there in person having dinner with her. She doesn't
want Edwina to find out because there's her marriage at stake,
and then the inheritance scheme's at stake, and her family's
survival at stake. She doesn't want Anthony to find out

(35:33):
because she loves him and she cares for him, and
she doesn't want, you know that to jeopardize, you know,
whatever she has with him, or like could have with him.
And that scene it was incredible because it's like, you know,
shops are fired in so many different directions where Edwina

(35:53):
finding out, Lady Mary's incredible speech where she finally stands
up to her parents and finally uses her voice, and
it's like that is it, and you could see in
your performance you're like, oh my gosh, this isn't happening,
but oh my gosh, this is happening. Like you're so
proud of her in that moment. That's something that resonated

(36:17):
with me, like seeing someone who maybe was once bullied
finally stands up to the bullies, whether that be like
her parents or anyone like in any experience that I
can kind of think of it, it's incredible, like to
see that that growth of someone finally be like, you
know what, I'm going to stand up for myself. And

(36:39):
I think Kate really felt that with Lady Mary, seeing
this woman who she Kate felt she had to take
care of, and to see her then suddenly stand up
and speak so proudly and with such confidence and fearlessness.
It's everything that Kate's about. I have two daughters with

(37:00):
whom you have had every opportunity to form a connection,
but the choice to shut us was yours alone. Thank you.
I do not think I took it lightly. What shook
me was the introduction to the Sheffields. Lucky you to
get to play in that sandbox? What went through your
mind when you first read that? You know it could

(37:21):
be very kind of surface and very kind of one note,
if if not kind of give nuance because it is
written quite harsh and quite biting. So we really I
really worked with that actor who she was wonderful. I
thought she is to put a little bit more smile
and that sort of right, keep that societal front, let

(37:41):
the words roll out as they were, but put a
little sugar on each of it all, because that that's
what's going to cut in more when people are looking
each other like did she just say that. Yes, I
had to rewind, Yes, exactly. And that's what you wanted
because if someone I think initially she was, she was
very angry and going after and just becomes it just
becomes a talking head at that point, you're not really

(38:02):
receiving and you just you immediately know who that person
is if it's that So finding those moments where she
kind of lays into her own daughter and then her granddaughter, Yeah,
but also being you know, being kind or you know,
being specific about when she looks to her husband in
a thinly veiled sort of really digging thing that doesn't

(38:25):
need to be looking at someone. Those are things that
we kind of really wanted to feed to the uncomfortableness
of what that dinner table and how it's landing on
everyone else and then looking around another one's like what
is going on here? And the fact that she was
in real life, I think she's four foot eleven four
foot ten. I loved because she's much shorter than everyone,

(38:48):
but she had all the she was, you know, wielding
all the power and experiously or so she thought. Yes,
I wondered how many takes it took to do that
dinner table scene. That's like, well, those those it's a
lot of coverage. So we're doing that for most of
one day. That takes because you're you have to move
around the table, but you know, and you're you're you're

(39:08):
crafting and working on different performances depending on who you're working. Wow,
but uh, it's just a sheer nature of that many
people around a table. That's going to take numerous hours. Yeah.
What I think a lot of fans love about Shanda
Land is we love the really super competent characters, witty characters,
and just that the writing, the dialogue is can be killer.

(39:32):
At this dinner table scene of it was very biting.
There was a lot of unspoken stuff happening, a lot
of looks and glances and yeah, I and that's they're
all very deliberate. Again, many, if not all, of those
looks are scripted. Chris. Chris has specific moments that he wants,

(39:54):
Oh yeah, how a particular piece of dialogue is being
received and what that means when one person looks to another,
whether whether it's Lady Danbury and Lady Violet trying to
sort of uh keep it from getting you know, getting
into that place of a family fight, uh and trying
you know, distracting on the when they talk about the

(40:15):
pies and the jam or whatever. But um, but certainly
the discovery as it gets on in each each individual
character of how that hits them. You know, Violet's look
to Anthony, did Anthony's look to Kate? What did she know?
What's going on here? Is how he presents himself to Duena,
who's sitting right next to him. So we were very

(40:36):
clear about obviously where they sat on the table and
how it would lay out. And then of course you
know Kate through her eyes Simone's eyes, really trying to
keep keep a lid on this coming out and the
deal that that she has spoken with them prior to
this her fearing not only how it's going to land,
uh with with Anthony, but really her sister and the

(40:59):
family and how this is going to fracture. Yeah, and
I think, you know, when Anthony kind of listens to
it all and yeah, I just remember feeling that sense
of like, you know, innocence, Like I'm innocent. I didn't
mean this an a deviant way. They're not schemes, you
have to believe me. And I think she definitely keeps
her cards close to her chest. There's many different factors,

(41:21):
so that kind of personality trait, but I think it
also came from a place of maybe Kate not holding
onto her microphone and being like, this is me and
this is how I feel and this is what I want.
Do you feel like you ended up doing that as
you poured yourself into the role of Kate By any chance,
I think maybe I tend to do that as well sometimes.

(41:43):
And one of the amazing things about this past year
has been developing confidence and just owning myself a bit more.
And I think it's it's really fun and actually I
encourage my peers around me to do the same, and
especially women around me to do the same. I'm tired

(42:04):
of a woman being confident and happy and successful and
ambitious and opinionated to have a negative connotation. I think
it should be celebrated. M It's very very much Ashandeland characteristic.
I think in female characters why I'm a diehard Olivia
Pope fan, Like, there are reasons to be disgusted with her,

(42:30):
but it's because she's human, and there are just as
many reasons, if not more, to love her. I love
characters like that, and I feel like Kate Sharma falls
into that category. She's human, you know, there's a bit
of an extremist, and I think maybe towards the end
of the story she finds more of a balance between
are you being reserved and keeping your cards close to

(42:52):
your chest or are you actually running away and not
owning what you want? Are you being honest with yourself?
Are you being dishonest with yourself and therefore being honest
with the people around you? Do you hate him or
do you love him? Like it's all that back and forth,
back and forth, And I think towards the ends of
the story we kind of she finds that middle ground.
But yeah, I think that's what I really loved about

(43:13):
playing her. She doesn't. She's very go hard or go home.
She doesn't do things half. Possibly that's it right there.
It's not like I am trying to be meek and mild.
It's like I don't. I don't have to prove anything
to you. I am who I am. It is what
it is. You just said something that kind of opened
up my understanding of this season too. I keep harping on, oh,

(43:38):
all these backstories and going behind the facade to really
see what people's intensions and motivations are. But the willingness
to grow, that's maybe one of the things I didn't
couldn't put my finger on, but it's, yeah, there is
so even Eloise and Theo, there's a willingness to grow there.

(44:01):
They're butting up against society which has telled them, you know,
don't rock the boat. And it may not be a
conscious effort to want to rock the boat, but I
think it's just it is in who they are, and
I think they cannot help themselves. That is a constant
discovery and revelation as to who they are as individuals
who have minds of their own. I think they did

(44:22):
an interview at Terithra when we wrapped and I was like,
let's just let women have it. Like I've experienced a
lot of times, people will have it. People are allowed
at their opinion, but people always have to say something negative,
especially about a successful woman, and it's like, just let
her have it, just let her have her moments. Well,

(44:43):
thank you so much, Simone for spending time with us
and letting us into your head and telling us about
how you developed hate. Thanks, of course, thanks for having me.
Thank you for joining us on this deep dive into
the world of Bridgerton. Next week, Tom Vericker returns and
Edwina herself. Sharithra Chandron joins to breakdown episode two o six.

(45:07):
If you're enjoying this show, please subscribe, share with your friends, rate,
or leave us a review. And if you haven't finished
binging Bridgerton on Netflix, please go do that so you
can enjoy all of the juicy spoilers with us. Bridgerton.
The Official Podcast is executive produced by Sandy Bailey, Lauren Holman,
Tyler Klang, and Gabrielle Collins. Our producer and editor is
Vince to Johnny Bridgerton. The Official Podcast is a production

(45:34):
of Shondaland Audio in partnership with iHeartRadio. For more podcasts
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