‘Bridgerton’ Star Simone Ashley Says As A Woman Of Color She Works ‘Twice As Hard’

"You hope the goal is that one day … there's a sense of ease for women of all heritages and cultures to have doors open for them," Ashley said.

Let it be known, dear reader, that much like her character, Kate Sharma, “Bridgerton” star Simone Ashley isn’t afraid to speak her mind.

The British actor of Indian descent told the “Reign With Josh Smith” podcast in its Tuesday episode that although she views herself as “a bit of a fighter,” she’s also well aware of how rare it is to see South Asian women play lead roles in mainstream, Westernized television and film.

“For me it has just always been like, ‘I’m just like any other actress, I can do this. I can have a script put in front of me and bring a character to life and I’m smart and got creative ideas and I can do this,’” Ashley explained. “But I think, yeah, as a woman and a woman of color, you do have to work harder.”

“We are working twice as hard, but you know what, I would do it again,” she added, calling her breakout success in the popular Netflix series “the most rewarding feeling.”

Simone Ashley attends The Fashion Awards 2021 in London.
Simone Ashley attends The Fashion Awards 2021 in London.
Gareth Cattermole/BFC via Getty Images

“It’s a nice feeling to just push through and to have your dreams achieved no matter what the hurdles are,” she said.

She did admit, however, that she experienced some “self-doubt” when “stepping away from the character and speaking to the press.” She said during these moments it was hard not to be hit with “the reality of how big of shift it is broadening this space, especially for South Asian women, and how still we’re so early within normalizing all of this.”

“You hope the goal is that one day it is just completely normalized and there’s a sense of ease for women of all heritages and cultures to have doors open for them,” Ashley said.

The “Sex Education” star expressed to Net-a-Porter in March that she’s “deeply proud of my heritage,” but said being viewed as a “spokesperson for Indian people” is a daunting responsibility.

“For me, my responsibility is to read the script, do the work, turn up on set and do a great job. That’s it,” she said. “I guess everyone deals with it in their own way, but I am an actress at the end of the day. Opportunities should be open for any individual, and I just think us being there is enough.”