Ruby Barker, who played Marina Thompson in the hit Netflix series Bridgerton, has opened up about her mental health struggles while filming the show. In a candid interview with Variety, she revealed that she suffered two psychotic breaks during the production and received no support or aftercare from Netflix or Shondaland, the studios behind the show.
Barker said that her character’s isolation and the pressure of promoting the show took a toll on her mental health. She said she was hospitalized twice, once in February 2020 and another in July 2020, and no one from the production studios contacted her to check on her.
“I was deteriorating. I was losing my mind. I was having psychotic breaks. I was hospitalized twice. And no one from Netflix or Shondaland reached out to me,” she said.
She also said that she felt like she had to hide her struggles and act like everything was ok. “I felt like I had to be OK. I had to be grateful. I had to be happy. I had to be all these things that I wasn’t,” she said.
She added that she felt alone in her experience and that no one understood what she was going through. “I felt like I was alone in this experience. And I felt like no one understood what I was going through,” she said.
Barker said that she is now in a better place and hopes to raise awareness about mental health issues in the entertainment industry. She said that she is not ashamed of what happened to her and that she is proud of herself for getting through it.
“I’m not ashamed of what happened to me. I’m proud of myself for getting through it. And I want to help other people who might be going through something similar,” she said.
She also said that she hopes that Netflix and Shondaland will learn from her experience and provide more support and empathy for their actors. “It’s not just about me. It’s about everyone who works in this industry. We need to have more support. We need to have more conversations. We need to have more empathy,” she said.
Barker played Marina Thompson, a pregnant debutante who arrives in London under the care of her distant cousin Lady Featherington, in the first season of Bridgerton, which premiered on Netflix in December 2020. The show, based on the novels by Julia Quinn, follows the lives and loves of the Bridgerton family in Regency-era England. It became a global sensation, with over 82 million households watching it in its first month. The show has been renewed for four more seasons.
– Bridgerton: Ruby Barker Slams Netflix After Suffering Psychotic Breaks, Variety, Oct. 30, 2023
– ‘Bridgerton’ Star Ruby Barker Says Netflix And Shondaland Ghosted Her After 2 ‘Psychotic Breaks’, HuffPost, Oct. 31, 2023
– Bridgerton Actor on Psychotic Breaks, Netflix & Shondaland Did Nothing, The Hollywood Reporter, Oct. 30, 2023
– Bridgerton’s Ruby Barker calls out Netflix and Shondaland for not supporting her through two psychotic breaks, Hindustan Times, Oct. 31, 2023