Prince Harry and Meghan Markle sign mega deal with Netflix

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 09:  Prince Harry, Duhcess of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex attend the Commonwealth Day Service 2020 on March 09, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Harry and Meghan, here in the UK in March, have signed a deal with Netflix, according to reports. (WireImage)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have signed a huge deal with Netflix to create films and TV series for the streaming giant.

The deal, first reported by the New York Times and confirmed by a source to Yahoo UK, is believed to be a multimillion dollar agreement.

The couple, who stepped down as working royals at the end of March for personal and financial freedom, are also said to have set up a production company that is yet to be named.

The Times reported that the couple may appear onscreen themselves, but that Meghan will not be returning to acting.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex said in a statement: “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.

“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.

“As new parents, making inspirational family programming is also important to us, as is powerful storytelling through a truthful and relatable lens.”

As well as documentaries, the couple will produce scripted series, docu-series and features, and are understood to be keen to diversity of voices both in front of and behind the camera.

Some of their projects are already being developed, a source told Yahoo UK, including a nature docu-series and an animated series celebrating inspiring women.

Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix, said: “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.”

Read more: Could Meghan Markle be US president despite being a member of the Royal Family?

Prince Harry made his Netflix debut in August in a documentary called Rising Phoenix, which told the story of the Paralympic Games. He is the founder of the Invictus Games, an event which brings together injured former military personnel through sport.

It’s understood by Yahoo UK that Harry not only appeared onscreen but worked with the filmmakers behind the documentary.

He is also involved in a series on mental health with Oprah, which was filmed partly in the UK while he was a senior royal, but for Apple TV.

One of Meghan’s first post-royal pieces of work was a voiceover for Disney+, a competitor of Netflix.

However, while the film she narrated, Elephant, was released after she and Harry left their roles as senior royals, the work was completed while she was still a working royal.

The duchess is understood not to have been paid for the film, instead doing the work in exchange for a charity donation.

Netflix has not commented on how much the deal is worth nor how the couple will be paid.

Harry and Meghan moved to California in March, after their shock exit from their roles as working royals, which was announced in January.

They have bought their own home, understood to be paid for without help from Prince Charles, Harry’s father, who had funded their office and subsidised their work in the UK.

Read more: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle plant Diana's favourite flowers on anniversary of her death

They have confirmed plans to launch a nonprofit called Archewell, and any new production company is understood to be separate from this.

They have been winding up their former UK charity, which was called Sussex Royal, and filed to change its name to MWX Foundation in July as it goes through liquidation.

The couple’s post-royal work has been delayed by the global reaction to coronavirus, but also by the Black Lives Matter movement, which it’s understood will inform the work Archewell will carry out.

They have been volunteering across the city of Los Angeles, Meghan’s hometown, including with charities like Baby2Baby, and at a pre-school close to where the duchess went to high school.

Meghan has also been working with non-partisan political groups in an effort to encourage more people, particularly women, to vote in the forthcoming election in the US.