Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Netflix work must abide by Queen’s standards
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Meghan Markle, 39, and Prince Harry, 35, had been plagued by rumours they were looking to get into Hollywood ever since their withdrawal as senior royals March. They finally confirmed speculation on Tuesday announcing they had signed a deal to produce programmes for streaming service Netflix.
The couple said they will focus on “family programming” and that their work will aim to “create content that informs but also gives hope.”
They are expected to work on documentaries, docuseries and programmes for children.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s statement about the deal read: “Our lives, both independent of each other, and as a couple have allowed us to understand the power of the human spirit: of courage, resilience, and the need for connection.
“Through our work with diverse communities and their environments, to shining a light on people and causes around the world, our focus will be on creating content that informs but also gives hope.”
They added: “As new parents, making inspirational family programming is also important to us, as is powerful storytelling through a truthful and relatable lens.”
The Sussexes said they were “pleased to work with Netflix, and that its “unprecedented reach” would “help us share impactful content that unlocks action”.
Meghan and Harry’s unprecedented deal is a royal first and while the couple are no longer working members of the Firm, they are expected to abide by a certain code.
According to the Times, the Queen insists all her family – working and non-working royals subscribe to the seven Nolan principles of ethical standards.
The Nolan Principles are: Selflessness, Integrity, Objectivity, Accountability, Openness, Honesty and Leadership and are the same principles which are meant to be followed by members of the British Government.
Meghan and Harry’s Netflix work will be expected to stick to these seven principles of public life even though they no longer serve the Queen in an official capacity.
While most of these principles are likely to align with Meghan and Harry’s work, the rule of Objectivity could be difficult to uphold when making a documentary.
A description of the Nolan Principle of objectivity reads: “Holders of public office must act and take decisions impartially, fairly and on merit, using the best evidence and without discrimination or bias.”
However, despite Meghan and Harry’s best intentions, Netflix is entertainment service and they may be expected to inject their work with a sense of drama to capture viewers.
When Meghan and Harry reached an exit deal with the Queen in January, the palace said in a statement they had “made clear that everything they do will continue to uphold the values of Her Majesty”.
Impartiality is a key value of the Queen’s and one the couple could struggle to uphold as they enter the realm of entertainment.
In the wake of their royal stepdown Meghan and Harry have seemed to enjoy more freedom of expression.
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While as senior royals they were expected to remain politically neutral, in recent weeks Meghan has shared platforms with high-profile democrats and shared her thoughts on the upcoming US election.
The Duchess ruffled some feathers by calling on her fellow countrymen to vote in November.
Some staunch royal fans feel Meghan and Harry should be stripped of their royal titles for their perceived dabbling in politics.
Meghan and Harry have kept their HRH styles and Duke and Duchess titles since stepping down but have agreed not to use them going forward.
The Queen will review the couple’s exit terms next spring.
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