King Charles ‘would not have approved’ of Mike Tindall’s ‘ugly’ commercial ventures

Late last week, Mike Tindall flew to Australia to film a tacky reality show competition. He’s appearing on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! The Sun has already called him “the first Royal to ever take part” in this kind of show. The amount of money keeps changing too – at one point, Tindall was reportedly being paid something like £250,000 or even £500,000. Now they’re saying it’s £150,000. But at least he’s not explicitly cashing in on his royal connections, right? Wrong. When he landed in Brisbane, he gave an interview to the Sun (which was probably a paid interview) and he answered questions about his wife, his wife’s royal cousins and more.

Mike Tindall has landed in Australia ready to become the first Royal to ever take part in I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! The former England rugby ace, 43, arrived at Brisbane airport on a red eye flight from London, and said he’d miss his royal family while in camp.Mike is married to the late Queen’s granddaughter Zara Phillips, making him the long-running show’s first-ever Royal Family signing.

Wearing a baseball cap and sunglasses, Mike told The Sun: “It’s probably one of the longest times we’ve been away completely with no communication. When you go away you still have communication, so that’s obviously going to be the hardest bit. You’ve just got to get your head around doing what you’re doing and try and win some stars and stuff and see where you go from there. I want to win stars because I want to eat! The hanger is always going to be the biggest thing you have got to worry about but I’ve also got three kids, so dealing with lack of sleep comes with the territory.”

And he shared that Australia held a special place in his heart. He said: “Australia is a special place yeah, I met Zara in Sydney. There is no holiday planned at the moment afterwards. ”

Asked how his royal wife felt about the show, Mike went on: “She is fine, otherwise I wouldn’t have done it would I? I was always on the fence but I do think it will be good fun at the end of the day. That is the other thing, I like groups of people and I like things that can be good fun so let’s see. I might regret it.”

His role on the show means that, if successful, Mike could be ‘King of the Jungle’ before King Charles’ coronation. But the dad-of-three laughed: “I’m not really thinking about that to be honest.”

He added that he had “no idea” if Princes William and Harry would be tuning in to watch him face Bushtucker Trials.

[From The Sun]

Tacky. And notice the lack of outrage about Mike literally giving paid interviews to tabloids about the royal family just before he gets paid to appear in a tacky reality competition. When I say “lack of outrage,” I mean from the media and the family. The only thing coming from the palace is some lukewarm annoyance that King Charles would not have approved, had he been asked:

Yet Tindall has a higher purpose: for taking part in the show, he’ll be paid a reported £150,000. Moreover, he’ll gain thousands of social media followers, plus a host of lucrative endorsement deals. Some have already been inked in. This week, as he prepared for I’m A Celebrity, Tindall starred in striking new advertisements for not one, but two major brands: Domino’s Pizza and Amazon Prime.

Neither Mike nor Zara are working royals. They do not have titles and receive no public money (though Zara benefited from a trust fund set up by the Queen Mother for her great-grandchildren), so on paper are free to make money however they choose. That said, there are obvious reasons why monetising royal connections is fraught with danger.

Indeed, while other non-working members of the Firm such as Sarah, Duchess of York have begrudgingly been allowed to earn a shilling via commercial endorsements, they are generally encouraged to do so overseas, and never to trade directly on their royal connections. This protocol explains the furious response two years ago to Zara’s brother Peter Phillips appearing in a Chinese TV advert for milk, in which he spoke about his upbringing at Windsor and was described in a caption as a ‘British Royal Family Member’.

Tindall is taking things a step further, which is causing some consternation in palace circles.

‘The King was not consulted about I’m A Celebrity, and certainly wouldn’t have approved,’ is how one royal source puts it. ‘As for these adverts, it’s pretty undignified. The Queen was Zara’s grandmother and the King is her uncle, and the timing is ugly, because it looks like being part of the funeral has raised their profile and helped drum up business. This stuff is absolutely not what the Palace wants, but these people seem determined to push and push in search of more money.’

[From The Daily Mail]

LOL @ “these people.” You mean the king’s niece and her husband? “These people” who can’t be controlled with a meager royal allowance? Literally, the choice is between “fund every random royal cousin and ban them from commercial deals” OR “every royal-adjacent gets to do whatever they want as long as they don’t get public money.” It’s one or the other. The royal source isn’t wrong, of course – it IS legitimately tacky and the optics look horrible. But there’s literally nothing Charles can do about it. I also think it’s kind of funny that it feels like Zara and Mike were waiting until QEII passed away to really trade fully on their royal-adjacency.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red and Christopher Furlong / Avalon.

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50 Responses to “King Charles ‘would not have approved’ of Mike Tindall’s ‘ugly’ commercial ventures”

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  1. MsIam says:

    The only reason I can see for this article is so that Charles can try and dodge being called a “hypocrite” after all of the fuss and complaining about Meghan and Harry’s “commercial” ventures. And their’s are much more dignified than Tindall’s. Look these are all middle-aged people with young families to support and Charles is talking about “slimming and cutting”. What does he expect if he’s not willing to foot all the bills? And weren’t the Tindalls rumored to be moving to Australia anyway?

    • SURE says:

      “What does he expect if he’s not willing to foot all the bills?” So do you think TQ was footing their bills, or more to the point, was she generously funding Anne so that she in turn could support the couple?

      • MsIam says:

        I definitely think the queen was helping Anne. Didn’t she give Anne her property as opposed to a lease like others? And yes I believe Anne or the queen was helping Peter and Zara. But the queen is gone and Anne is elderly too, although I believe she will be the next one to make 100, lol. But I thought the Tindalls wanted to move to Australia and if true they would probably have to earn additional income.

    • Debbie says:

      Are the royal family’s lawyers “at the ready?” Did their lawyers vet Mike’s contract to make sure it doesn’t embarrass the family? Let’s see, what else did they say when H & M first leave for the U.S.? The reaction from the RR and RF is definitely muted and any displeasure about this seems forced.

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly. You can’t have it both ways, Chuck! This is what you get with a “slimmed-down” monarchy. Either put them on the dole so you can control them and have more people to do your work (it’s actually a great opportunity if they all acted like a true team) or expect that they’re going to go do whatever it takes to make their way. You don’t get to say what is too tacky or unseemly. The Tindalls probably have nothing to lose because titles aren’t even at play!

      If only the Queen and Charles, back in the day when Diana was still in the fold and began to outshine him, then after the divorce, then through to the Sussexes and Tindalls, York Princesses, etc. had looked at their whole family tree and portfolio and said, “hey we could actually be everywhere and do some good here and raise awareness and still live like Kings and Queens here-Let’s use the whole family to our benefit, everyone can be assigned to things they’re interested in and some things that will allow them to grow. Clearly some of these people are OK with the limelight, it won’t cost us THAT MUCH to pay them a salary and give them housing and in return they can do a proper job-a win-win!” FFS, they have the Kent’s and Glosters working. They could even let “these people” earn some extra money as long as they approved of the method.

      They really need to take a page out of Kris Jenner’s book.

  2. equality says:

    There was more fuss over H&M making legitimate business deals and doing actual work. Imagine the horror if they did a domino’s commercial. I say good for Zara and Mike though. Cash in. The show does not sound like fun, but if he’s up for it then go for it.

    • Rapunzel says:

      As we know, true royals only patronize the Woking Pizza Express.

      Domino’s? No way.

      Question for Brits: is Domino’s even a thing? Cause it’s not even really a thing in the U.S. And all I saw visiting England was Pizza Express and Pizza Hut.

      • HeatherC says:

        I’m sure if Domino’s was a big thing in UK Andrew would have worked up an alibi involving them as well lol

      • EllenOlenska says:

        @Rapunzel….The royal warrant for Woking Pizza Express….internet win of the day

      • TQ says:

        @Rapunzel Yeah, Domino’s is a thing in the UK. Not as good as US Domino’s, but whatever — I still order it when I get the occasional craving.

      • Emily_C says:

        Domino’s is a really big thing in the U.S. I guess it depends on where you are. But also, Domino’s is a major funder for forced pregnancy crap. So don’t buy from them.

    • Anonymous says:

      OMG it would be amazing to see
      Harry in a Super Bowl commercial of some kind. Maybe Megan too.

      That is, if most of the NFL situation didn’t suck.

  3. Leanne says:

    Isn’t this necessarily the consequence of his streamlined royal family policy? How else are they supposed to earn money? You know they aren’t just going to get regular jobs – the HORROR!

    • Tacky says:

      What did Charles expect from his slimed down monarchy? Of course they are all going to cash in on their royal status. It pays better than a desk job.

      • Feeshalori says:

        Tacky, I’m sure you meant “slimmed” instead of “slimed,” but slime definitely suits the description of the monarchy perfectly! That gave me a good morning chuckle.

    • Steph says:

      I’m not sure how far either of them went with their education, but their professional lives were both as elite athletes. But sure they could even land a regular job that would support their 3 children. Does anyone know what school the kids go to? Are they with their cousins?

    • Isabella says:

      I feel like the queen mother saw this coming. She set up a trust fund for her descendants. Sounds like they need it. I predict Edward and Sophie’s kids have no chance of any kind of working role.

    • The Recluse says:

      Funny how fast the royal cousins showed themselves to be little better than trailer trash. They’re going to grift as much as they can off of their connections.
      And yet they continue to pick on Harry and Meghan for taking the high road in self-employment. The RR and the grey men surrounding the King have earned this.

  4. Lady Esther says:

    But what do they want this (by royal standards, pocket money) for?

    Let’s think about expenditures. They don’t need to pay for where they live, or energy costs, or healthcare, food or clothing, transportation or anything else that normals do. Mike bangs on about school fees but are the kids even in school yet? Zara keeps horses and shows up to Ascot and other royal events in designer gear, but other than that they don’t have expensive hobbies. They don’t yacht, or summer in expensive places, buy lots of property, hold glittering salons with tiaras and jewelry, or hobnob with the jetset during ski or cruise season, or race cars, or do anything else that actually rich aristos do.

    Now let’s think about income. Surely they are taken care of by Anne (who herself receives a mix of Crown support for being a working royal + trusts from QEII) as far as all living expenses plus the horses. Probably Anne pays future school fees too but even with 3 kids in expensive private schools, that’s what, 100k pounds/year tops for all three? And Zara has been pulling down multimillion dollar endorsement contracts for years now. Yet Mike is doing Domino’s pizza ads for 150,000 quid and now the reality show.

    Something doesn’t add up!

    • Becks1 says:

      I think their lives are a lot more expensive than you are assuming, we just don’t see a lot of it bc the press doesn’t cover them.

      • Lady Esther says:

        but that’s just it – there are only so many categories of expenses, even for rich people. And they have never demonstrated anything other than *cough*lowbrow tastes*cough*. So what is all the money for?

      • Tacky says:

        No one is footing their bills. They live in a house on Anne’s property probably to save on security, but, beyond that, they have all the same expenses as any other family.

      • Becks1 says:

        Right but my point is that we don’t know their tastes, not really, bc the press doesn’t cover it. Like you said they don’t yacht, summer in expensive places, hobnob with the jetset during ski season, etc.

        But the truth is they probably do a lot more of that than we know and the press just doesn’t talk about it bc no one really cares that the queen’s granddaughter just bought a ski chalet in switzerland or went on a month long vacation to *insert expensive destination*.

        Also, just because we presume Anne is funding a lot of their lifestyle now, dosent mean she will keep funding it indefinitely or that they feel they’ll be financially secure after her death. I view this as Tindall capitalizing on his fame as a former rugby star and the late queen’s grandson in law while he can.

        ETA also someone is paying for their clothes, food, and other bills – i doubt its all anne, although it could be.

      • Debbie says:

        “No one is footing their bills” but they live in Anne’s house? And their security is covered too? Isn’t the cost of lodgings the most expensive in any family, whether they own or rent? So, they have free security. Who pays to heat and cool, and light this nice home they live in, Anne/RF too? Yet, some think that their expenses are the same as most regular families? Hm.

    • AmelieOriginal says:

      “Other than that they don’t have other expensive hobbies.” Well anything equestrian related is SUPER expensive. I really doubt Zara is footing the bill on all that–veterinary care, feed, riding equipment, stable fees (?), and I’m assuming there are fees to sign up in shows? Trailering the horses everywhere to different shows etc. I don’t think she actively competes anymore? She’s probably mooching off her mother for most of it.

      They probably do vacation in expensive places but we don’t hear about it because they fly under the radar. But I wonder if she expects to live in a royal property forever? Anne will die someday and I guess when William becomes king, he’ll be generous enough to let his cousin live in royal housing? And we don’t know if they live there completely for free, for all we know maybe Anne charges them rent, they live on the grounds of Gatscombe Park.

    • equality says:

      Investments for the future when Anne isn’t around. College funds and inheritance for their children.

    • Lady Esther says:

      @Tacky: What is more plausible, the idea that they pay all their own bills, or that Anne foots them? They live on Anne’s estate. Is she setting up a separate energy counter for water, heat, fuel? Is she making all bills for their children’s illnesses, or any other health problems for that family be sent directly to them? Is Anne sending her housekeeper shopping for food for herself and Tim Laurence (to the extent he actually lives there lol), but telling Zara and Mike to be sure to send out their own housekeeper to shop for them and pay it themselves? Speaking of which, who is scrubbing Zara and Mike’s toilets? Who cooks and does the washing up? The laundry? Staff they pay for themselves, while Anne has her own separate staff? Etc.

      The much more plausible explanation is Anne pays all their living expenses as long as they’re on Gatscombe property.

      @AmelieOriginal granted, equestrian hobbies are expensive but I’m not an expert, so for let’s say a couple of horses, maybe up to 5 (I don’t know if Zara is actually competing professionally anymore or how many horses she needs), are we talking 1 million quid per year to pay for all that? If Zara isn’t pulling down that amount annually in endorsement contracts, I’ll eat my hat. Let alone Anne and whatever she is pulling in a year (minimum 3 million if she wants to upkeep that estate AND pay everything for Zara, Mike and the fam). I chose 3 million because that’s the sum Charles famously whined about for keeping Balmoral going annually, although that was a few decades ago IIRC…

      As I said, since they don’t have expensive hobbies, and when they do things that get publicised (like travel, or anything else) they make the sponsorship clear, I fail to see why they need to money grub the way they are doing in increments so low. I’m just curious as to what’s the money for?

      as for investments/saving for when Anne is dead….again, if Anne hasn’t come into serious money for being QEII’s only daughter, and isn’t going to pass that on to Zara and Mike (Peter has his own heiress), I’ll eat my hat…..either their expenditures are out of whack, or their income is far, far less than we would believe given they are the UK Royal Family. It all seems very strange!

  5. Steph says:

    I’m surprised they didn’t mention how lucrative this will be for his podcast.

  6. Deb says:

    Challenge of the day: find 5 people on the planet who give a crap what Mike Tindall is doing.

    • Brassy Rebel says:

      His wife and three children is four. I’m stumped on the fifth. 🤔

    • Cessily says:

      Does anyone even watch these shows? I went through a Survivor phase but one season was more than enough for me. I’m just waiting for the “inappropriately close” female friendship article to start being printed I would bet they are coming.

  7. Vanessa says:

    The lack of Outrage from the normal establishment shows that it was never about what they sworn up and down about . It’s has always been about controlling Meghan and Harry and a heavy dose of jealousy for the minor royals family . Mike is literally getting cold hard cash to spill all about the royals but only Harry and Meghan that’s why the usually suspects who are always so outraged and offended on behalf on the royal when Meghan and Harry do anything or seen doing anything remote normal like going to a concert or shopping. Let’s be clear Charles doesn’t care that mike is on a Reality show no one cares about mike or Zara there will be a few people who will tune in to see if he bashes Harry and Meghan that’s all. While Meghan and Harry are working with a purpose and living their life mike will be in a jungle makes a ass of himself that karma . This royal reporter has so stupid when it comes to US we don’t get their dumb version of I’m celebrities get me out here so why would Harry be watching it .

  8. Amy Bee says:

    I mean Mike and Zara have to make a living right? I just don’t get why there’s outrage when Harry and Meghan do the same. The press didn’t even want to pay for Harry and Meghan when they were working royals so why were they outraged when they left to make money? I think the entire family except the King and Queen should be making a living.

    • Brassy Rebel says:

      The monarchy should be abolished. They should all be earning a living instead of sponging off the taxpayers. Problem solved. And it would certainly relieve some of the strain on the British economy.

  9. equality says:

    Interesting that they mention a trust fund started by the QM. So untrue or just for the great-grands except H&W? Or one fund divided out to all?

    • Becks1 says:

      yeah I always find that interesting. We know that Harry said in 2021 (I think that was the year) that he did not receive money from the QM. prior to that, the story had always been that she left money to all the great-grandchildren and left William the least since he would be duke of cornwall and then king.

      So now I wonder if the whole thing about the trusts was a lie (about a year ago I googled to find out more and all the stories about it, even from the BBC, were about “reports” that the QM had done this, nothing verified.)

      I just don’t think if she left all the greats significant trusts that there would be such scrambling for income. For the trusts to be tax free, she would have had to create them 7 years before her death, I think? so there would have been time for them to grow a great deal and presumably provide the Queen’s other grandchildren with financial “security.” (in quotes bc they could also work for that lol.)

      I wonder if its one of those things that people decided just made the QM sound like a better person than she was, but it never happened?

      • Amy Bee says:

        @Becks:It would have been easier for the QM to just leave all her money to the Queen so she won’t have to pay inheritance tax. I don’t believe she left money for anybody but the Queen.

      • Lady Esther says:

        @Becks, I agree with you. That was basically the point of my other posts – in order to explain the desperate money-grubbing, either the non-Charles-line expenditures of the RF are way out of whack, or their income is far less than reported….which means the fabled “trusts” from QEII and the Queen Mother (or Philip for that matter) simply may not exist.

    • Cat says:

      Before the Queen Mother died, there was constant news of her overspending and how she was “broke” and the Queen had to save her and pay her debts. I doubt there was much cash left to the grandchildren, mostly jewellery, horses etc.

      • Julia K says:

        I think you are right on with this. Lots of history with Prince Philip allegedly try ing to tone down her spending and Elizabeth bailing her out. I suspect those old news articles are still out there but I remember them well and thinking what on earth could she possibly need that costs so much? What little she had went to QE2.

      • SenseOfTheAbsurd says:

        Queen Mother had huge debts when she died, I’ve seen the figure of 6 to 7 million in debt to her bank. There were also shenanigans about her being in possession of jewellery which had been reported to have been given away years before, to avoid inheritance tax.

  10. Brassy Rebel says:

    “These people.” But the whole family is circling the drain so fast it’s impossible to keep up anymore.

  11. aquarius64 says:

    Mikey’ reality show stint looks so much like Tom Jr.’s time on Aussie Big Brother. Tindal is not balling like the tabloids claim. He and his wife and kids live with his mother in law. He is getting chump change from this show and tabloid interviews (and the interviews equal no outrage). He must resents Harry because the blood prince is getting 20M USD which could pay off the Monteceito manse and getting international acclaim. Mikey is from a working class background and resents his “bell end” cousin in law.

  12. Lizzie says:

    What a day, KC calling Tidal tacky or undignified and William getting called out for saying his diary was too full to attend WC. Abought time for both. Took the wind out of Tindal’s sails, I hope.

  13. Fascinating Fascinator says:

    I just saw the 1st promo pictures on Instagram and I am in shock at how tacky he looks in the promotional materials. It’s so tacky! I can’t stand it – and they won’t be attacked or run out of town or exiled for their behavior. The double standard is WILDIN. Wow.

  14. Candy says:

    All these people were born into billions and billions. It’s gross for them to trade on their connections to Royalty, period.

    I’ll make an exception for Harry and Meghan because at least they’re furthering some good causes. Even still some of their actions are questionable.

    Most people cannot even begin to imagine this kind of wealth, which is why they make so many excuses.

    • equality says:

      The billions and billions are only held by the top dogs who don’t believe in sharing. Most only passes monarch to monarch to avoid paying taxes. The rest can’t inherit because then it would be taxable.