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Meghan Markle’s Netflix blow ’embarrassing’ for Sussexes: ‘Got to produce something’

Meghan Markle: TV host says Pearl ‘dead in the water’

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The Duchess of Sussex was recently dealt a major blow as Netflix axed her animated show, ‘Pearl’. Meghan Markle announced the show last summer and had been developing it alongside Sir Elton John’s husband David Furnish. ‘Pearl’ was among multiple series cut by the streaming giant, as the service made wide-spread cost-cutting moves following a reported loss of 200,000 subscribers.

Meghan and her husband, Prince Harry, signed a multi-million pound deal with Netflix two years ago. 

Under Archewell Productions and Archewell Audio, the Sussexes were expected to produce content for both Netflix and Spotify. 

So far, the couple have released one podcast episode — a holiday special that featured the likes of Stacey Abrams, José Andrés, James Corden, Elton John, Naomi Osaka and Tyler Perry.

Daily Mirror royal correspondent Russell Myers has claimed that the recent axing is “embarrassing” for the Sussexes and the couple need to release content “sooner rather than later”. 

He told Thursday’s episode of Pod Save The Queen: “There have been certain reports in UK and US media that the bosses of these streaming giants are getting a little frustrated, and you can understand why.

“We’re a year or two on with very little content — one podcast with a very annoying jingle, now no Netflix series. 

“You would assume the Invictus Games documentary needs to be coming soon since we just had the Games.

Mr Myers added: “When are we going to see some content? Sooner rather than later I would hope. 

“It is a blow. It is relatively embarrassing. They’ve got to produce some content.”

“Will people get bored of them? Maybe.”

The podcast’s host, Zoe Forsey, suggested that the Sussexes need to act when the public’s interest is spiked. 

She said: “It does feel like interest is dropping off a little bit, but I think that’s because we haven’t seen anything from them, not that people aren’t interested, I think there’s nothing for people to be interested in. 

“It feels like they were back in the news and all over everyone’s social media because of the Invictus Games, and they kind of need to jump on those spikes when they’re back in the public eye again.”

Although ‘Pearl’ is no longer in development with Netflix, the company still has an Archewell project in the works — ‘Heart of Invictus,’ a documentary series about the Invictus Games, executive produced by Harry.

The series will focus on the powerful stories of competitors on their journeys to Invictus Games The Hague 2020, which was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and took place in April 2022.

Harry founded the Games, an international sporting event for wounded, injured and sick armed service personnel and veterans, in 2014 having been inspired by the Warrior Games in Washington, US.

According to the Archewell website, the Duke of Sussex said: “Since the very first Invictus Games back in 2014, we knew that each competitor would contribute in their own exceptional way to a mosaic of resilience, determination, and resolve. 

“This series will give communities around the world a window into the moving and uplifting stories of these competitors on their path to the Netherlands next year. 

“As Archewell Productions’ first series with Netflix, in partnership with the Invictus Games Foundation, I couldn’t be more excited for the journey ahead or prouder of the Invictus community for continuously inspiring global healing, human potential and continued service.”

Meanwhile, Meghan recently announced the launch of ‘Archetypes’, a podcast that will tackle typecasting and stereotyping women. 

The Duchess plans to talk to experts, historians and women who have experienced being typecast. 

In a trailer released for the Archewell Audio project released in March, Meghan said: “This is how we talk about women: the words that raise our girls, and how the media reflects women back to us… but where do these stereotypes come from? And how do they keep showing up and defining our lives?”

Archetypes, which is set to launch this summer, will feature “uncensored conversations” about how typecasts can influence and change narratives.

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