The 1994 Interview Prince Charles Gave

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Yesterday marked the 23rd anniversary of the most famous interview the Prince of Wales has ever given, though I think it’s safe to say it’s not a milestone marked by either him or his staff. On June 29, 1994 a two-and-a-half hour documentary on Charles premiered, touching on his philanthropy, his role within the Royal Family, and his views on religion, policy and Britain’s future. It is best known, however, for being the interview in which he admitted to cheating on his then-wife, Diana, Princess of Wales.

While I have certainly discussed the Wales marriage in the past, this wouldn’t normally be a topic I would cover on its own. However, in light of Prince Harry’s recent Newsweek profile (as well as its backlash) and a slight change of course in how the younger set of royals are handling public interviews, I think it’s worth considering the ramifications of this event.

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Kate in Gucci at the V&A

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The Duchess of Cambridge debuted a new Gucci dress to unveil the Exhibition Row Quarter at the Victoria & Albert Museum today in London. The opening marks the museum’s largest architectural project in a century and features new public and gallery space, designed by British architect Amanda Levete. Notably, the building’s original facade is showcased.

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No One Wants to Be King & That’s Not a Big Deal

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Predictably, the major takeaway from Newsweek’s profile on Prince Harry was his statement that no one in the Royal Family had much desire to be king or queen. Specifically, he said:

“Is there any one of the royal family who wants to be king or queen? I don’t think so, but we will carry out our duties at the right time.”

Read one way and that means no one wants to be the monarch, but, le sigh, duty calls and one will just get on with it. And apparently this is how a great many people read it based on the moral outrage that’s poured out over the interview in the last few days.

Except…that’s sort of missing the point.

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Home Video & Personal Photographs Needed for BBC Diana, Princess of Wales, Documentary

There’s a new documentary on Diana, Princess of Wales in the works to commemorate the 20th anniversary of her death. Filmmakers are in the process of gathering photographs and videos from the days in-between her death and funeral and I’ve included their ask below for more detail. If you have anything on hand that may be of use and are willing to share, please do consider reaching out to them at the email listed below. The full flyer can be accessed here.

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H O M E  V I D E O  &  P E R S O N A L  P H O T O G R A P H S  N E E D E D  F O R
B B C   D I A N A,  P R I N C E S S  O F  W A L E S, D O C U M E N T A R Y

Sandpaper Films are producing a documentary about Diana, Princess of Wales to mark the 20th anniversary of her death.  

We are looking for people willing to share personal home video footage or photographs that document the days that followed The Princess’s tragic death, and which also reflect what Diana meant to them. 

Did you travel to London to pay your respects to her? Were you on the cortege route on the day of the funeral? What did you capture on video or in photographs of those six days following the death of Diana? If you have any material which you would be willing to share we’d love to hear from you at: dianadocumentary@sandpaperfilms.com

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The Alternate Choice of Arabella Stuart

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If you’re not familiar with the story of Arabella Stuart (or “Arbella Stewart,” if you are so inclined) that’s quite alright. During the majority of her lifetime, few outside of royal circles were even aware of her existence and, in my opinion, her status as a true rival claimant to the throne has been a bit overblown. Nevertheless, her relatively brief life played out just as England was passing from Tudor to Stuart hands and it draws on the dynastic sensitivities that came from a childless queen and a foreign-born king.

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Prince Harry’s Newsweek Profile

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Oh my, we have another live one. American magazine Newsweek has been given access to Prince Harry over the course of the “best part of the past year” and yesterday published a lengthy profile on him, covering topics from the death of his mother, his “transformation” and the future of the monarchy. Harry has had a bit of a turnaround over the last few years, most dramatically in the last 12 to 18 months. The three things that jump to my mind as particularly pivotal are the press release Kensington Palace issued on his behalf regarding his relationship with American actress Meghan Markle, his incredibly candid interview with The Telegraph podcast released in April and the nature of his charity work, which I believe can be viewed as picking up the mantle of the late Princess of Wales.

This year started off in an uncertain place for the Royal Family. Or, more specifically, it wasn’t clear what exactly they were all doing. The KP press release was a complete 180 from the frigid and terse statements usually released when commenting (or rather, not commenting) on the personal lives of members of the family. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge had spent the second half of 2015 and 2016 receiving their first wave of serious criticism about their lack of accessibility and relatively low engagement numbers. Meanwhile, the Queen had just celebrated her 90th birthday and there seemed to be a complete disconnect between the older and younger generations.

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The Queen’s Speech 2017

The Queen’s speech at the State Opening of Parliament earlier today is being referred to as “somber” by the media . The tone isn’t surprising given recent events in the UK, from the terror attacks in London and Manchester to the Grenfell Tower fire to the recent election that only increased political uncertainty. Consideration of the public mood was apparent even in a purely Royal celebration at Trooping the Colour on Saturday via the Palace’s statement beforehand.

So, there was little chance this speech was going to strike a tone of overt optimism, but it was critically important this year, not least of which is because it was announced a few days ago this session of Parliament will last two years instead of one. The move is meant to ensure there is no disruption to a successful Brexit, but it also highlights the actual weight of the crown in the midst of chaos.

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The Good Parliament & The Death of Edward III

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One of the most pivotal Plantagenet reigns was that of Edward III between 1327 and 1377. Part of that is due to its sheer length – 50 years would be a remarkable reign today, so imagine how that felt in the 14th century. Another facet is everything that was accomplished during that time, not least of which were strategic victories against the French at Crecy and Poitiers. But its greatest legacy was the dynasty that Edward left behind, one which in some respects was night and day from the England which he inherited as an adolescent, and in others was an eerie mirror image of it.

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The White Princess Recap: Character Assassination

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It’s almost been a month since I covered one of the White Princess episodes and I’ve had it on my “to-do” list to finish off the rest of the series. Despite not particularly enjoying it, once you start something, etc. etc. But after watching the fifth episode in the series I’m actually going to stop because I think this show crosses a line. I don’t know how many of these issues are  unique to the TV version of this story, or if they are following the lead of the books on which they are based, but there is a fine line between historical fiction and character assassination and this is the latter.

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Ascot 2017 & the Tangled Windsor Web (Updated)

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Observing a moment of silence for the victims of recent terror attacks

Surprise! The Duchess of Cambridge made an appearance at Ascot today alongside her husband, the Duke of Cambridge, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and Zara Tindall, among others. It was such a family affair that even Michael and Carole Middleton were seen in the Royal enclosure. But the true star of the show was the Queen herself, who has been attending the event annually alongside her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, since the ’50s. True to form, she was there today, rocking a lime green coat and hat, handbag and gloves properly in place.

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