United Kingdom

Simone Ashley wears quilted coat and knee-high socks in Netflix drama Sex Education

In Sex Education she plays popular schoolgirl Olivia, alongside geeky lead Otis, portrayed by Asa Butterfield

She's set to sizzle as the next star of steamy period drama Bridgerton – but actress Simone Ashley seems equally at ease playing a more strait-laced role.

Dressed in a grey quilted coat and knee-high socks, the 25-year-old was filming the Netflix drama Sex Education only weeks after it was announced she was replacing Phoebe Dynevor as Bridgerton’s new female lead, Kate Sharma.

In Sex Education she plays popular schoolgirl Olivia, alongside geeky lead Otis, portrayed by Asa Butterfield.

However, her character took on a more raunchy role for a scene with boyfriend Malek, played by Armin Karima.

Viewers were shocked by scenes which began with Olivia entertaining her boyfriend with some Bollywood dancing and wearing traditional Indian dress, but ended rather more explicitly.

Simone is certain to become a household name after landing the prized role of Kate, whose surname was changed from the novel on which the show is based, to reflect her South Asian background. In the novel by Julia Quinn, her second name is Sheffield.

The storyline between Anthony, played by Jonathan Bailey (above) and Kate is to replace the main love story of the first series, which featured Ms Dynevor’s portrayal of Daphne Bridgerton

Her headstrong character is the elder sister of Lord Anthony Bridgerton’s intended high-society bride Edwina. Kate vows to prevent her only sister from marrying him – but ultimately falls in love with him herself. 

The storyline between Anthony, played by Jonathan Bailey, and Kate is to replace the main love story of the first series, which featured Ms Dynevor’s portrayal of Daphne Bridgerton.

Bridgerton has won acclaim for its diverse cast, which sees black and biracial actors portraying some of the most prominent roles. 

One of the main characters in season one, the Duke of Hastings, is played by Rege-Jean Page, a British-Zimbabwean actor, while his guardian Lady Danbury is portrayed by British-Ghanian actress Adjoa Andoh.

Simone is certain to become a household name after landing the prized role of Kate, whose surname was changed from the novel on which the show is based, to reflect her South Asian background

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