Liz Garbus, director of Harry & Meghan, has accused Buckingham Palace of attempting to “discredit” the Netflix series. Speaking to Vanity Fair, she explained that a senior palace aide made false claims about Royal family members not being contacted before the show was released. Garbus stated, “For instance, Buckingham Palace said that we didn’t reach out for comment when we did.”
“They did that to discredit us…and by discrediting us, they can discredit the content of the show.… We lived through some of those moments that were a little bit like Alice Through the Looking Glass,” she continued.
Despite the overwhelming criticism the show received, especially from UK publications, Garbus defended it, suggesting that public interest in the couple has been hypocritical. “People are very happy to read everything about Harry and Meghan when it’s somebody else writing about them. But when Harry and Meghan want to tell their story in their own words, it suddenly becomes an issue.”
Moreover, “People are not forced to watch a documentary. It’s not going to be required in school. It is your choice what you binge and what you don’t binge. There have been more documentaries and books written about Harry and Meghan than Harry and Meghan have produced themselves. So I think it’s an interesting kind of pearl-clutching that doesn’t quite add up with the public’s appetite for reading stuff about them from other people.”
Garbus met Meghan during the production of the Duchess’ first Netflix project, an animated children’s series called Pearl, which the streamer ditched last year. Instead, Garbus started work on Harry & Meghan, which the couple described as “very much” about their love story. However, Garbus saw it essential to “connect the dots” to racism and colonialism to provide greater context to the couple’s story.
Although Buckingham Palace claimed that members of the Royal family were not contacted before the show’s production, they soon backtracked, with Kensington Palace confirming that they had received an email from an unknown organisation whose identity they could not verify. According to the Palace, attempts to contact Archewell Productions and Netflix went ignored.
Upon the first week of release, the docuseries racked up 81.55 million hours watched. By the end of the second week, the series garnered 97.7 million.