Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are reportedly ‘at odds’ with the production staff on their Netflix docuseries because the ‘panicked’ couple want to make ‘such extensive edits’ that the team believe the project could be ‘shelved indefinitely’, multiple sources have told Page Six.
The Duke, 38, and Duchess, 41, of Sussex, who now live in their $14million Montecito mansion with their two children, Archie, three, and one-year-old Lilibet – are working on a documentary as part of their $100 million deal with the streaming service.
It was previously expected that the production would be aired in December, following the fifth season of The Crown on November 9, according to the publication.
However, sources claimed last week the couple now wanted to make edits to the series, which would possibly delay its release until later in 2023, as they look to ‘downplay much of what they have said about King Charles III, Queen Consort Camilla, and the Prince and Princess of Wales’.
And now insiders have told the publication that the couple are ‘having second thoughts’ on the project, with one Netflix source saying: ‘Harry and Meghan are panicked about trying to tone down even the most basic language. But it’s their story, from their own mouths.’
Another said: ‘They’ve made significant requests to walk back content they themselves have provided — to the extent that some Netflix staff believe, if granted, it will effectively shelve the project indefinitely.’
However the source added that the streaming platform was ‘standing by the filmmakers’ who want to keep the content in the project, and that it will still be ‘going forward.’
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are reportedly ‘at odds’ with the production staff on their Netflix docuseries because the ‘panicked’ couple want to make ‘such extensive edits’ that the team believe the project could be ‘shelved indefinitely’, multiple sources have told Page Six
The couple’s production company, Archewell Productions, signed a reported $100million deal with the streaming giant in 2020 but there has yet to be a release (pictured, cameras filming the coule during their trip to New York last year)
Last week, one Hollywood industry source said the couple were facing doubts about the series following the Queen’s death.
They said: ‘A lot of conversations are 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, do Harry and Meghan just want to shelve this thing?,’ they added.
A Netflix insider also claimed: ‘Netflix has been keen to have the show ready to stream for December. There’s a lot of pressure on (Netflix CEO) Ted Sarandos, who has the relationship with Harry and Meghan, to get this show finished.’
Prince Harry and Meghan (pictured at the Queen’s funeral) reportedly want to edit their docuseries with Netflix and delay its release ‘until next year’ after the Queen’s death, multiple sources told Page Six
It comes after The Mail on Sunday reported that Harry has launched a last-minute bid to tone down his bombshell autobiography amid fears his final draft ‘might not go down too well’ in the wake of the Queen’s death.
The memoirs had been signed off ready for an expected autumn release, but the Duke – who is writing the book as part of a near £40million three-title deal – has asked to make some significant alterations.
His request may be seen as a sign that he is ready to take a more conciliatory approach to the rest of the Royal Family, but could cause problems for his publishers.
‘Harry has thrown a spanner in the works,’ a source said. ‘He is keen for refinements in the light of the Queen’s death, her funeral and his father Charles taking the throne.
‘There may be things in the book which might not look so good if they come out so soon after these events. He wants sections changed now. It’s not a total rewrite by any means. He desperately wants to make changes. But it might be too late.’
Publishing sources suggested that the Duke might have limited ‘wriggle room’ given he was handed a seven-figure advance.
The Duke, 38, and Duchess, 41, of Sussex (pictured with Prince William and Kate in Windsor on September 10, 2022), who now live in their $14million Montecito mansion with their two children, Archie, three, and one-year-old Lilibet – are working on a documentary as part of their $100 million deal with the streaming service
Publishers Penguin Random House had already demanded a rewrite after the first draft was deemed ‘too touchy-feely’ and placed too much focus on mental health issues, The Mail on Sunday understands.
MailOnline has contacted a representative for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for comment.
Last month, Meghan hinted that the documentary she and Prince Harry are currently filming for Netflix could focus on their ‘love story’.
Speaking in an interview with The Cut, the Duchess said her five-year-long romance with Prince Harry is one of the ‘pieces of her life’ that she has not yet been able to share with the public.
The couple’s production company, Archewell Productions, signed a reported $100million deal with the streaming giant in 2020 but there has yet to be a release.
A documentary series about the Invictus Games has been confirmed. Meghan’s planned animated children’s series was scrapped as part of wider Netflix cutbacks.
It had previously been rumoured that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were planning a fly-on-the-wall documentary series, in the style of Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
However it appears it might be closer to a look back on the royal romance.
‘The couple has directly smashed rumors of a reality show, both in statements made to publications and in conversation with me,’ journalist Allison P. Davis noted in the article.
‘But, Meghan explains, there’s a difference between a historical documentary and a reality docuseries.’
King Charles III, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Princess Anne, Princess Royal arrive at the Committal Service held at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle on September 19, 2022
It was previously expected that the production would be aired in December, following the fifth season of The Crown on November 9, according to the publication. Pictured, Harry and Meghan at the Queen’s lying in state on September 14, 2022, in London
They have been spotted with a film crew at a number of engagements, including the Invictus Games earlier this year
Cameras were also following Meghan and Harry during a visit to New York in September 2021, pictured
The Duchess continued: ‘The piece of my life I haven’t been able to share, that people haven’t been able to see, is our love story.’
The Duke and Duchess have been filming the Netflix documentary for more than a year after signing a widely reported $100million deal with the streaming service.
They have been spotted with a film crew at a number of engagements, including the Invictus Games earlier this year. The filming is believed to have taken place for their confirmed docu-series Heart of Invictus.
It follows allegations that the Queen was forced to put her foot down over Megxit and told the Sussexes they were ‘either in or out’ at the crunch Sandringham summit where the royals decided Harry and Meghan’s future.
The explosive extracts of the forthcoming book, Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown by Valentine Low, were published by The Times.
Mr Dampier believes that King Charles and the Prince of Wales may also ‘feel the same way’.
Mr Low wrote that it was the monarch herself who felt that unless the couple were willing to follow the rules which apply to all working royals, they would ‘not be allowed to carry out official duties’.
‘There was a very clear view: you can’t be in and out,’ a source told Mr Low. ‘And if you’ve got such clarity of view, it’s very difficult to say, “Why don’t we go 10 per cent this way instead of 20 per cent?”‘
This meant that compromise was taken off the table by the Queen, the author said.
Mr Dampier believes that the website change will make it clear the Sussexes are not working royals ‘and can’t pose as semi-official royals’.
It is understood that the website changes now reflect the roles within the Royal Family as opposed to the line of succession.
Royal biographer Angela Levin said that the change shows what Harry and Meghan are ‘not doing’, and how it is valued in the Royal Family.
The couple are still waiting on whether their two children will be given titles of prince and princess.
Following the death of the Queen, the Sussex children are entitled to prince and princess and the HRH titles as grandchildren of the monarch.
But despite William and Kate’s titles having been updated to the Prince and Princess of Wales, Archie and Lilibet’s have not yet changed.
A Buckingham Palace spokesperson said: ‘Updating live on a website doesn’t quite work. We will be working through updating the website as and when we get information.’