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Prince Harry shock: How Duke is following in Prince Edward’s footsteps with latest move

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In the first big confirmed move of their Hollywood careers, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have founded their own production company and signed a multiyear deal with the streaming giant Netflix. The undisclosed deal is their first big move since leaving their big royal decampment earlier this year – after the coronavirus crisis hampered their charity launch.

The couple said in a statement: “Our focus will be on creating content that informs but also gives hope.

“As new parents, making inspirational family programming is also important to us.”

Harry and Meghan are also confident that Netflix’s “unprecedented reach will help us share impactful content that unlocks action”.

The move harks back to Harry’s uncle Prince Edward’s former career in television – which was a mixed bag to say the least.

When Prince Edward left Cambridge University in 1986, he embarked on a career in the entertainment industry, initially in the theatre.

He served as a Production Assistant for Andrew Lloyd-Webber’s Really Useful Theatre Company before trying his hand at television production.

The Prince established Ardent Productions, which created dramas and documentaries, and was one of his longest-surviving projects.

His most successful feature with the company was a documentary about his late great-uncle the Duke of Windsor, which sold worldwide and was well-received in the US.

Unfortunately, Prince Edward’s television career wasn’t as successful in the end, with Ardent being dissolved and assets selling for as little as £40.

One television venture the Earl of Wessex is best remembered by is the disastrous ‘It’s a Royal Knockout’.

Both the Queen and Prince Philip were dismayed by Edward’s unconventional wheeze to raise money and, along with Prince Charles and Princess Diana, decided not to participate.

What started off as a fun charitable event turned into disaster when Prince Edward stormed out on reporters who failed to enthusiastically congratulate him for his work.

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Presenter and broadcaster Vanessa Feltz noted in a Channel 5 program about the event: “He [Edward] wanted the press to big him up and say him how fabulous it had been, but it hadn’t been fabulous.

“It had been embarrassing, it had been a monstrous carbuncle on the entire history of the Royal Family.”

Here’s hoping Prince Harry doesn’t follow the same suit – and it seems him and Meghan are looking down more sophisticated avenues in television.

It is currently unclear whether the pair will be starring in the productions themselves, or whether they will just be producing them – but given their on-camera appeal, it is unlikely the couple will just be sitting in the production suite.

It is also unclear how much the ‘megawatt’ deal is worth – but for reference, the makers of Game of Thrones signed with Netflix last year for a cool $200 million.

The appeal of the royal couple isn’t hard to understand – their sheer star power as two of the most famous people in the world puts almost any amount on the table for them.

Netflix has also had considerable success with The Crown, and are likely to be riding high off the end of the fourth season which is inextricably linked to the couple, due out in November.

The couple have been making the move to become financially independent upon their move to the US – and need to maintain their high public profile in order to keep the money rolling in now that they are not paid by the Privy Purse.

The couple’s production company will operate independently from their charitable foundation, which is called Archewell.

The non-profit aims to offer “classes, lectures, seminars, conferences, workshops, and retreats on a variety of topics,” run a mentoring scheme, or conduct and host “events and exhibitions for cultural, sporting, health, mental health and entertainment purposes.”

It also has the potential to self-publish articles, magazines, books, music, podcasts, television shows, and computer software.

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