We’re still talking about how the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very mad that the BBC’s The Princes and the Press documentary is exposing their cozy relationships with the press and their years-long history to smear the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Prince William is said to be especially engorged with rage, per usual, and he seemingly orchestrated the story about how he and Kate “took” Kate’s Christmas Jazz Hands special away from the BBC and gave it to ITV as punishment. Except the Christmas special will still be produced by BBC Studios and the Keens are still negotiating with ITV. Becky English at the Daily Mail had yet another exclusive about how hard all of this has been on William and how ANGRY he is about all of it. Some highlights:
William thinks he can bully everybody: Prince William has raised the stakes in his row with the BBC, putting future TV projects with the broadcaster at risk. He and his wife Kate have already banned the corporation from showing a charity carol concert to be hosted by her at Westminster Abbey. William, 39, was infuriated by a BBC Two documentary airing ‘unfounded’ claims that he and his staff briefed the media against Harry and Meghan. Now insiders suggest the Christmas concert, which has been offered to ITV instead, could be the tip of the iceberg.
He won’t work with the BBC again!! One source said it was clear that William, who worked with the BBC over his Earthshot Prize but is protective of his staff and their reputations, would have to ‘seriously consider’ any further projects. And that may extend to other senior royals. They have been angered, not just by the claims made in the documentary, called The Princes and the Press, but also by the broadcaster’s approach to the project.
Why they’re mad: The BBC refused to allow William as well as Buckingham Palace and Clarence House – the households of the Queen and the Prince of Wales – to view the two-part programme in advance. The corporation did offer a ‘right of reply’ but it is understood the claims outlined in its memo to them were extremely ‘vague’.
William is driving this: ‘It’s fair to say that while the response to what has happened is being driven by the duke, there is complete unity among all three royal households,’ a source with knowledge of the situation said. ‘You really couldn’t get a cigarette paper between them. There is a serious issue of integrity at stake here.’
Deeply bruised: It is understood that William is still deeply bruised by the Martin Bashir scandal, which has not yet been discussed in the two-part documentary, fronted by BBC journalist Amol Rajan. ‘The whole Bashir scandal is still very raw for him – and now this,’ said a friend.
They’re so scared: Insiders have said, however, that it will further focus on the rift between William and Harry and contain even more explosive revelations. It is understood the royal households will wait until the broadcast on Monday before deciding what further action, if any, they will take. This could include a formal complaint to watchdog Ofcom. BBC chairman Richard Sharp yesterday said he hoped the Royal Family would ‘respect’ the documentary, said he stood by the programme’s producers and ‘hoped’ they got it right.
It’s kind of hilarious to me that the royals see the documentary as a pro-Meghan conspiracy when… apparently, they were asked to participate in it. William’s beef with the BBC is that he wasn’t given an advanced look at the documentary and he wasn’t given the opportunity to bully the BBC into making changes. The BBC and Amol Rajan *did* give all of the royal households a chance to make comments or send their representatives to speak on camera though, and clearly the BBC made a good faith effort to ask KP and the other households to tell their side of the story. They just refused to do so and now they’re mad that Meghan was contacted and she authorized her lawyer to speak. That’s all this is – they played themselves and William in particular is mad that the BBC won’t bend to his demands.
As for this idea that the BBC needs the royals more than the royals need the BBC… good luck with that. Seriously, I can’t wait to see how this sh-t plays out.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.