This week, the Sun and the Daily Mail had blaring headlines about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex doing a “reality show” in which they would film personal stuff and show what their lives are like in California or some such nonsense. I genuinely believe that Harry and Meghan are open to the possibility of appearing on-camera for documentaries or even a docu-series about their charitable and philanthropic work. I also believe that the British tabloids are just unhinged and hateful and looking to put a crazy-negative spin on even the loosest of rumors. Anyway, H&M’s PR team did deny the “reality show” rumor and I found Katie Nicholl’s Vanity Fair write-up very curious:
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have shot down rumors they plan to make a reality TV series about their lives for Netflix, after it was reported on Monday they had agreed to make a reality series about their charitable work. The Sun claimed privacy-conscious couple had signed a deal agreeing to allow cameras to follow them for three months and “give people a glimpse into their lives and see all the charity work they do.” Said a source, “Netflix obviously want their pound of flesh.” But an aide for the couple told Vanity Fair, “The Duke and Duchess are not taking part in any reality shows.”
The news will come as a relief for concerned palace couriers, who are said to be watching Harry and Meghan’s foray into television closely. There was some concern last week when the couple filmed a video message for the Time 100 list in which they urged Americans to vote in the forthcoming election, with Harry adding that voters have the chance to take a stand against “hate speech.” Their comments prompted President Trump to shoot back at the couple, causing what was described by one source as “acute discomfort” among some staff at Buckingham Palace.
Buckingham Palace this morning declined to comment on the Sun story, but aides close to the couple say the Sussexes intend to uphold the values of Her Majesty and the royal family in all of their future commercial endeavors. One well-placed source said that the couple have no plans to make a “Kardashian-style TV show” adding “that would absolutely go against what they are trying to do which is make original content about important issues.”
The first series the couple are working on, which is in pre-production, is an animated series about inspiring women. The TV show will be aimed at a young audience and has been greenlit by bosses at the network. “There’s a lot of buzz about it, it is going ahead and work has started on the series,” an industry source told Vanity Fair.
The other project in works is an innovative wildlife documentary series which could see the couple return to Africa when travel restrictions are lifted. The shows the couple make will include scripted series, docuseries, documentaries, features and children’s programming focusing on stories and issues that resonate with them personally. A source close to the couple said, “Enabling a more compassionate and equitable world isn’t just something they do through their non-profit, it’s a belief they hold and model themselves which will carry through in this venture.“
Speaking to Vanity Fair royal author Ingrid Seward said that it would come as a relief to the Queen that the couple won’t be making a reality show. “As the royal family discovered in 1968 when they made the film Royal Family the public appetite for these fly on the wall documentaries is insatiable. It seemed a good idea at the time, but was considered too intimate and never shown again. For Harry and Meghan this would be too much too soon and I think they should wait and think long and hard about making anything that is deemed ‘personal.’ ”
“The other project in works is an innovative wildlife documentary series which could see the couple return to Africa when travel restrictions are lifted.” I think this is the morsel with which the British tabloid built the “reality show” story. I do think Harry and Meghan already have plans to appear on camera in one or several docu-series or documentaries. But none of them will be a Kardashian-esque reality show. That being said, it’s absolutely BONKERS to me that there’s all of this performative hand-wringing about the Sussexes and what they MIGHT do with Netflix… all while Prince William is promoting his ITV documentary, where cameras followed him around for two years.
Speaking of, the Daily Mail has another ridiculous story about how the Sussexes have “home footage” they recorded this year, and that they told Netflix about the “home footage” and it could be used in a documentary or something. Grasping, stupid, crazy.
Photos courtesy of Backgrid, Avalon Red.