Who can forget the Bridgerton opening sequence? With guns, miniature people, and clasped hands mysteriously emerging from the branches of a huge tree. The opening sequence for Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story strikes a decidedly more emotional tone than its precursor – but as fans have found out, Queen Charlotte is an altogether different show (read: it’s a tearjerker).
Studio AKA’s Manddy Wyckens has directed the main title sequence for Netflix’s new Queen Charlotte – for those that aren’t familiar, the hotly anticipated show is Shondaland’s prequel to Bridgerton, telling the story of a young Charlotte’s rise to prominence and earliest love. This time, the title sequence is a measured, minimalist and 2D affair; a series of vignettes follow Queen Charlotte through the palace ground, each denoting key moments from the series.
But the keen-eyed viewer will find hidden symbols and references laced throughout. For example, as young Charlotte ascends stairs or passes by a mirror, we’re given a glimpse into her future through reflections and shadows. Other elements are harder to spot, like writing scrawled on the wall, illuminated by a swinging lantern. Discussing the sequence, the AKA director confirms: “Every little detail bears symbols, references, or clues about the show.”
“The original idea was to create a sequence that retraces the steps of Queen Charlotte in a similar fashion to the show,” Manddy explains, “which has been done by weaving vignettes in such a way that we glimpse at the story and blur the lines between the Queen from the past and the one in the present. We kept it subtle, connecting shots with match cuts and glimpses in mirrors and shadows, all the while maintaining a regal pace to the sequence.”
The sequence is brought to life with a sharp illustrative style, leveraging negative space to draw attention to a range of focal points throughout.
GalleryManddy Wyckens / Studio AKA: Queen Charlotte: a Bridgerton Story, Main Title Sequence for Shondaland (Copyright © Netflix, 2023)
Manddy Wyckens / Studio AKA: Queen Charlotte: a Bridgerton Story, Main Title Sequence for Shondaland (Copyright © Netflix, 2023)
About the Author
Liz (she/they) joined It’s Nice That as news writer in December 2021. After graduating in Film from The University of Bristol, they worked freelance, writing for independent publications such as Little White Lies, INDIE magazine and design studio Evermade.