Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have set their sights on streaming. Not only have the Duke and Duchess of Sussex founded a yet-to-be-named production company. But they have also signed an exclusive multi-year deal with Netflix to produce feature films, scripted series, documentaries, and children’s programming. Amid their new careers in Hollywood, away from the front-line of the royal family.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry moved to Los Angeles with their 1-year-old son Archie in March after stepping down from their senior royal roles. They recently bought a home in Santa Barbara, about 95 miles north of L.A.
Harry and Meghan have endured a tumultuous time since leaving the UK. After initially looking to run their independent operations under the brand SussexRoyal. The couple agreed to a deal with the royal family, under which, they had to ditch the name, stop using the HRH titles and give up public funding.
Joining Other High Profile Figures
The Royal couple recently joined other high-profile figures. Like the former US president, Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, in signing a production deal with the deep-pocketed streaming firm.
Barack and Michelle Obama signed a deal with Netflix in 2018 and went on to acquire the Sundance hit, American Factory. Which won the Oscar for the best documentary. Becoming, a documentary focused on Michelle Obama, was released this year.
The couple have reportedly held meetings with a number of Hollywood studios and Netflix’s streaming rivals, since moving to California this year. It has not yet been reported how much the deal is worth. But Netflix is known to make extremely lucrative offers to high-profile content makers. Reserving its highest price tags for established TV creators like Shonda Rhimes, Ryan Murphy, and Kenya Barris.
“Our focus will be on creating content that informs but also gives hope”
“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,” Meghan and Harry said in a statement. “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. We are pleased to work with Ted and the team at Netflix whose unprecedented reach will help us share impactful content that unlocks action.”
Acting Credits and Future Projects
Megan, best known for her role in Suits, made her return to show business earlier this year in April, with a narration role in the Disney+ nature documentary, Elephant. The non-fiction film benefited Elephants Without Borders, an organization that protects wildlife in Botswana.
Meanwhile, Harry made his Netflix debut in the streaming platform’s documentary, Rising Phoenix, about the Paralympic Games. He also joined Oprah Winfrey to produce a docu series on mental health for Apple’s streaming service, Apple TV+ set for next year. The prince previously revealed that he and Oprah have had many meetings and “are assembling subject matter experts” to guide the show.
Though Markle was already an established actress before leaving Hollywood for Buckingham Palace, the former Suits actress has no desire to act on camera anytime soon. That being said, Markle and Prince Harry may still appear in front of the camera as part of their documentary-type programs. Several projects are already in the works, including “an innovative nature docuseries and an animated series that celebrates inspiring women.”
“Harry and Meghan have inspired millions of people all around the world with their authenticity, optimism and leadership”
Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer and co-chief exec, added, “Harry and Meghan have inspired millions of people all around the world with their authenticity, optimism and leadership,” said Ted. “We’re incredibly proud they have chosen Netflix as their creative home. And are excited about telling stories with them that can help build resilience and increase understanding for audiences everywhere.” Their content will be exclusive to Netflix, which has 193 million subscribers worldwide.
Harry and Meghan’s public interests have been largely focused on social issues, environmental concerns and mental health. So it’s possible their project could be centered in those areas. They are also committed to diverse hiring practices for the key roles they are actively filling at their production company.
The couple’s production company will also be operating independently from their charitable foundation, which is called Archewell. Prince Harry and Megan shut down their previous philanthropic endeavor, SussexRoyal, in March after they agreed to stop using the term “royal” for commercial or charitable activities.