I genuinely wondered if the Duchess of Cambridge’s Christmas Jazz Hands charity special had been announced before this week, and as it turns out, no, it had not. Despite the fact that Christmas is only a month away and most television stations prefer to lock in their holiday programming months in advance, it looks more and more like Kensington Palace was half-assing their plans and expecting television stations to cover for them. Last night, the Sun reported that William and Kate were so incandescent with rage over The Princes and the Press, they were removing Kate’s Christmas program from the BBC and giving it to ITV. Only it turns out, that isn’t even close to what’s really happening. From Sky News:
ITV is in negotiations to host a carol concert involving Prince William and Kate, to be broadcast in the days before Christmas. The programme – a new format – will be recorded at Westminster Abbey in early December but sources at ITV say they were only made aware of the offer late last week. It comes two days after a documentary on the BBC examining the relationship between the media and Princes William and Harry.
In an interesting twist, the Christmas carol programme, in which the Duchess of Cambridge will play a key role, is being made for ITV by BBC Studios – a production arm of the corporation, although that is not unusual in broadcasting.
Royal aides are not denying the programme is being aired on ITV but would not be drawn on whether that decision was connected to Monday’s BBC documentary, The Princes and the Press. A second episode of the documentary will air next Monday and the central allegation – denied by the palaces – is that the different households can, and did, brief against one another.
An ITV source said of the late commission: “It was unusual for it to come to us this late.”
News of the carol concert being aired on ITV was first revealed by The Sun on Thursday’s front page. The newspaper said Kate will take a leading role – and also suggested the Cambridges’ children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, might attend. That has not been confirmed by Kensington Palace.
The show is in addition to ITV’s usual Carols at Christmas offering, which the broadcaster is still going ahead with that week. However, contracts are still being negotiated which is why ITV has yet to formally announce the William and Kate carol concert in its festive schedule. It’s likely to be aired on 23 or 24 December.
It is not unusual for BBC Studios to make programmes for other broadcasters – they made the Inside the Duchy of Cornwall documentary for ITV in 2019.
Think of the layers of BS involved here. William is raging at the BBC because of The Princes and the Press, but he also hates ITV because they aired Meghan and Harry’s Oprah interview. Instead of playing two networks against each other, William was short-sighted and stupid and now he has to work with BOTH of them. He screwed himself over! It’s amazing. But really, the most fascinating part is that William, Kate and their KP staffers are genuinely this lazy and incompetent. Kate just breezed in, mumbled something about how she’d like to host a Christmas special and left everyone to work on it without her. Everything is so last-minute!
Chris Ship says that there was a “wobble” with planning it and the move to ITV possibly isn’t even about The Princes and the Press.
The carol concert at @wabbey is Kate's "brainchild" – a way to thank people and communities for what they've done in 2021.
The TV programme had a "wobble" last week and ITV stepped in late.
It's not clear if that was connected to Palace dismay about Monday's BBC @amolrajan docco https://t.co/UXxjlD8ktm
— Chris Ship (@chrisshipitv) November 24, 2021
Jazz Hands was out and about today, wearing new clothes.
Photos courtesy of Getty.