It’s a modern tragicomedy that the Duke and Duchess of Woke thought they could demand a deal worth at least tens of millions of dollars from a Hollywood streaming giant without having to deliver the goods.
Perhaps at the time they signed, with Netflix profits and subscriptions continuing to skyrocket thanks to lockdowns forcing people indoors around the world, it was a slim possibility.
Perhaps they thought its boss Ted Sarandos would be happy with the promise of Harry’s twee documentary about the Invictus Games and Meghan’s uber-woke (and now-cancelled) animated TV series about a 12-year-old girl meeting the kind of feminist icons, with who she trades stories of victimhood in her terrible podcast.
But now that the company is under increasing financial pressure to deliver non-woke content that will drive new sign-ups, commercial reality is biting.
Netflix is demanding its pound of flesh, and the Sussexes are clearly pouting.
Harry and Meghan will reportedly make edits to their long-awaited Netflix show
Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos is said to have personally secured the couple’s multi-million dollar deal with the streaming giant
The New York Post revealed last night that ‘the couple want to make more edits for the highly anticipated show’.
A Hollywood insider revealed: ‘There are a lot of talks happening. I hear that Harry and Meghan want the series to be held until next year, they want to stall. I wonder if the show could even be dead in the water at this point, will Harry and Meghan just shelve this thing?’
And why does their sudden decision seem to want to wait another round of gossiping about their family?
Most likely, knowledge that new King Charles III appears to be strategically delaying the decision to make the couple’s children Archie and Lilibet prince and princess until he sees the damage the Sussexes are wreaking with their American media ventures, including Netflix – the docuseries.
As a result, according to the Post, the Sussexes now want to re-edit the show ‘to remove or downplay much of what they have said about King Charles, Queen Consort Camilla, Prince William and his wife, Kate, the new Princess of Wales.’
Of course, that won’t please Netflix and Sarandos, who have already been patiently waiting for the better part of two years for any content.
Such a scenario was very predictable – and Harry and Meghan were either naive or willfully blind to proceed with this type of deal with the Hollywood devil because they were so desperate to secure the mega-moolah required to live their California lifestyle.
“While The Crown is the most high-profile example of Netflix cashing in on the personal lives of the British royal family, it is hardly an isolated one”
After all, part of Netflix’s success has been built on the back of exploiting Harry’s own family.
The fact that the company wanted to launch the couple’s Keeping Up With The Kardashians-style peep show after the latest series of The Crown in December is an indication of how commercially ruthless this organization – engaged in a deathmatch with rival streaming services Disney Plus, Amazon Prime and HBO Max – it’s real.
Remember that the next series of The Crown is going to be centered almost entirely on Harry’s own mother and father’s painful marriage breakdown.
Diana’s close friend Jemima Khan asked to have her credit for advising the producers removed when she realized that the story surrounding the late princess would, in her words, ‘not necessarily be told as respectfully or compassionately as I had hoped’.
The contrasting approaches between William and Harry over their mother’s memory are now striking.
While Wills has been waging war with the BBC to air the corruptly procured Martin Bashir interview with Panorama for the TV story, Harry is now employed by a show that will make an hour-long drama around that very exploitation of Diana.
And while The Crown is the most high-profile example of Netflix cashing in on the personal lives of the British royal family, it’s hardly an isolated example.
Their latest Diana: The Musical was a demeaning portrayal of Harry’s mother, who inaccurately claimed she used HIV patients for advertising and attacked Margaret Thatcher for her policies.
If a tabloid newspaper had made such a suggestion, Harry would most likely have rushed out a strongly worded statement and engaged his very busy lawyers.
But since it was his paymasters at Netflix behind the project, we only got conspicuous silence.
Series available on the UK version of the service today include the brutal comedy about the royal family The Windsors, the documentary Princess Diana’s Wicked Stepmother and the series Royal Wives of Windsor.
It’s a far cry from the holier-than-thou content the pair promised when they announced they were Netflix employees in late 2020.
At the time, Harry and Meghan said, following their usual mix of woke mumbo jumbo and meaningless corporate speak: ‘As new parents, it’s also important to us to make inspiring family programming, as is powerful storytelling through a truthful and relatable lens. We’re excited to be working with Ted and the team at Netflix, whose unprecedented reach will help us share impactful content that unlocks action.’
And Sarandos, who is believed to have personally secured the deal for Netflix, added: ‘Harry and Meghan have inspired millions of people around the world with their authenticity, optimism and leadership. We’re incredibly proud that they’ve chosen Netflix as their creative home – and excited to tell stories with them that can help build resilience and increase understanding for audiences everywhere.’
Well, a lot has changed since then.
Harry and Meghan have come to the painful realization that much of the interest in them from the American media and public was due to their proximity to the royal family.
But it will be impossible to maintain the closeness to the monarchy now led by Charles while waging a public media campaign against both him and his beloved wife Camilla.
Personally, I feel there is something karmic about this moral dilemma the Sussexes now face.
They continued with their highly damaging – and largely imaginary – Oprah interview, knowing that Prince Philip was on his deathbed.
And then they caused further stress for senior members of the royal family with Meghan’s thinly veiled threat to reveal all about her time in Britain during an interview with The Cut magazine in the weeks before the late Queen died.
Charles should realize, even if they tone down or push back this defiant Netflix reality show, that the damage has been done by formally severing ties with the Sussexes, who the public has long known are no longer an asset to the royal family.