Royal insiders describe Prince Harry and Meghan’s Netflix trailer as ‘a declaration of war’


Harry and Meghan’s new Netflix documentary is being seen as a ‘declaration of war’ by the royals, sources say.

A promotional trailer, which was posted online on the second day of the Prince and Princess of Wales’ high-profile visit to the US, dispelled any hopes that the Sussexes are declaring a ceasefire in their acrimonious battle with the royal family.

As well as including dozens of supposedly private pictures from their family album, the footage includes a voiceover from Harry saying gravely, ‘no-one sees what’s happening behind closed doors’ over a black and white picture of his wife on an armchair, apparently crying.

Camera IconRoyal sources say the message in the promotional clip for the Netflix documentary is clear. Credit: Netflix/Netflix

The film then immediately cuts away to a shot focusing on a pinched-looking William and Kate at the 2019 Commonwealth Service in London, with the Sussexes sitting meekly behind them.

The message, say royal sources, is unmistakable.

“I don’t see how anyone could view it as anything other than a declaration of war,” said one.

The minute-long Netflix teaser strongly suggests the Sussexes will confront rumours about their tempestuous relationships with senior royals head-on.

In a deliberately tantalising remark to a producer off-screen, Meghan says in the clip: “When the stakes are this high, doesn’t it make more sense to hear our story from us?”

Meghan says in the clip: “When the stakes are this high, doesn’t it make more sense to hear our story from us?”
Camera IconMeghan says in the clip: “When the stakes are this high, doesn’t it make more sense to hear our story from us?” Credit: Netflix/Netflix

Royal insiders reacted with horror and an increasing sense of anger yesterday as the trailer was released on social media ahead of the documentary being broadcast on Netflix next week as part of the Sussexes’ multi-million dollar deal with the streaming giant.

There was also disappointment that it had been released to coincide with William and Kate’s trip to the US, their first visit to the country since 2014, during which the prince is hosting his major environmental project, the Earthshot Prize.

Meghan was pictured with her dogs.
Camera IconMeghan was pictured with her dogs. Credit: Netflix/Netflix

While it is unlikely that the duke and duchess had much say on the trailer’s release date, the glee with which their supporters and publicists were treating it spoke volumes.

The Sussexes’ biographer, Omid Scobie, directly referred to the fact that Earthshot is so significant to William that it is being billed as his ‘Super Bowl moment’ .

He crowed on Twitter: “If tomorrow is Prince William’s Super Bowl – then here’s your half-time show”.

The trailer has coincided with a string of PR announcements by the Sussexes, including an appearance by Meghan at a women’s dinner in Indiana and the announcement of a charity donation of handbags she has facilitated.

“One can only conclude this is a concerted publicity drive on their behalf to stoke up interest in this documentary and is designed to clash with the Wales’ visit this week,” said another well-placed source.

“The prince and princess’s high-profile trip to the States to shine a light on community projects in Boston and the environmental crisis is being apparently used as a platform for the Sussexes to create the drama and attention they so clearly crave on a personal level, as well as content for the multi-million dollar deal they have signed since quitting as working royals.

“While the Waleses will carry on with their duties, Team Sussex appears determined to remind America of their own ‘compassionate activism’ – one lucrative contract at a time.”

Henry Dynov-Teixeira, 8, of Somerville, presents flowers to Britain's Prince William and Kate, Princess of Wales, as his parents Melissa, left, and Irene, look on following a visit to Greentown Labs, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2022, in Somerville, Mass.   (Angela Weiss Pool Photo via AP)
Camera IconPrince William and Kate receive some flowers during their visit to the US. Credit: ANGELA WEISS/AP

The minute-long clip was viewed more than 300,000 times within an hour of being uploaded to Netflix’s Twitter account on Thursday.

It features an assortment of private and public photographs, charting every stage of Harry and Meghan’s lives from birth to parenthood, set to a melancholic soundtrack.

The promo features an assortment of private and public photographs, charting every stage of Harry and Meghan’s lives from birth to parenthood.
Camera IconThe promo features an assortment of private and public photographs, charting every stage of Harry and Meghan’s lives from birth to parenthood. Credit: Netflix/Netflix

Images include snapshots of the Sussexes’ life together, such as embracing in a photobooth, a selfie of the pair in casual dress smiling, Meghan’s pregnancy, and of Harry serenading his wife with an acoustic guitar.

There is also a shot of the Sussexes in their kitchen at Frogmore Cottage on the night of their penultimate engagement as royals in 2020, when they attended a remembrance event at the Royal Albert Hall.

It shows Harry, casual in braces after taking off his uniform jacket, and Meghan having removed her cape kissing on their island unit.

It appears to have been taken by a professional photographer.

Harry and Meghan in their kitchen at Frogmore Cottage on the night of their penultimate engagement as royals in 2020.
Camera IconHarry and Meghan in their kitchen at Frogmore Cottage on the night of their penultimate engagement as royals in 2020. Credit: AP

Sources have said the couple often secretly employed their own photographer, Chris Allerton, even when they were working royals.

The photograph of the estranged Cambridges – as they then were – and Sussexes sitting one row apart at the 2019 Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey is also a controversial choice.

At the time the Fab Four, as they were known, were already on the rocks and steps were being taken to break up their joint household and charitable foundation.

With Meghan apparently gazing wistfully into the distance and Kate seemingly scowling at the camera, one insider remarked: “It’s as if someone scoured the Earth for the only unflattering picture of the Princess of Wales in existence”.



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