Meghan Markle Absolutely Refuses To Back Down On One Of Her Post-Royal Projects

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's lucrative partnership with streaming giant Netflix has soured considerably in recent months. Netflix is reportedly annoyed with Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's behavior after the Duke gave exclusive details about his close relationship with the queen, among many other things, to rival network NBC despite their multimillion-dollar deal. Sources told the Daily Mail that bosses at the streaming giant were enraged by Harry's decision, especially since a production team was following him at the time. 

The celebrity couple inked their lucrative Netflix deal back in 2020, as Deadline reported at the time, with a view to creating a whole range of content for them. However, it seems Meghan and Harry haven't lived up to their end of the bargain, especially since The Sun reports that Netflix cameras will be banned from Buckingham Palace during the upcoming Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Making matters worse, following extensive cutbacks at the streaming giant, the Sussexes' upcoming project, "Pearl," was also axed. 

Deadline confirmed the animated family series, a passion project for Meghan, in particular, had been canceled alongside several other in-development series in the wake of a huge drop in subscribers. Fortunately, the Duchess isn't letting it get her down.

Meghan Markle is trying to find a new home for her animated series

Meghan Markle isn't giving up without a fight. The Sun revealed the ambitious former royal is actively trying to find a new home for her passion project after Netflix scrapped it following extensive budget cuts. There's been a significant drop in subscribers to the streaming platform in recent months, and Markle's animated series, "Pearl," was one of the casualties when they decided to regroup. The former "Suits" star has since removed any mention of the show from the official Archewell website. Markle is keeping her spirits high, though, working alongside her production team to find a space for "Pearl" elsewhere. 

They're currently brainstorming how to pitch the project to high-profile rivals including Apple and Amazon since, under the terms of the Sussexes' current contract with Netflix, this is allowed once the streaming giant has officially turned it down. "Meghan and Harry will not give up on taking 'Pearl' to the screen," an insider confirmed. "They are determined to not let all the work and creative endeavors put into the idea simply fall away." 

Apple may prove to be the ideal home for "Pearl," since Prince Harry previously fronted a mental health series with them. As Town & Country magazine reported at the time, the multi-part series covered various facets of mental health and wellbeing, led by Harry himself in conversation with Oprah Winfrey.

The Duchess of Sussex also has a female-focused podcast in the works

Netflix isn't the only company having trouble with the Sussexes. After months of inactivity, Spotify took action over Meghan and Harry's podcast. Earlier this year, they advertised for producers to help usher Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's promised content into production sooner rather than later. Per Page Six, the celebrity couple signed a $25 million deal, in December 2020, to create a whole raft of content but had released just one short podcast episode to date. There were major concerns the Sussexes wouldn't get paid after seemingly failing to live up to the expectations of their contract.

Luckily, just a couple of months after the producer search began, Meghan confirmed she was moving forward with a new show called "Archetypes." Variety reported the first episode of the show, which will be hosted by the Duchess, is due to drop later this summer. Meghan will interview various experts in an effort to "dissect, explore and subvert the labels that try to hold women back." After departing the royal family, Meghan and Harry have worked hard to make their mark elsewhere and to establish themselves as viable Hollywood players, in particular. Evidently, not even setbacks like these will hold them back.

Is Meghan and Harry's Netflix deal in danger?

Following the news that Meghan Markle's pet project, "Pearl," has been dropped by Netflix, industry sources are now claiming the deal she and husband Prince Harry have with the streaming giant could be at risk. Daily Mail reports the Sussexes have been accused of pitching dull ideas and need to step up their game if they want to secure the massive payday they were initially promised.

Thus far, nothing has been released by the celebrity couple and there's major concern they won't live up to expectations. "They have announced plans to make shows that are educational and inspiring, rather than sexy and sensational," an insider explained. "The pressure will be on them to come up with a hit." A Netflix spokesman refused to confirm either way, noting simply that they were all continuing to work together.

The Sussexes' docuseries, "Heart Of Invictus" — which follows competitors taking part in The Invictus Games, and for which Netflix cameras were following Harry when he gave his comments about the queen to a rival network — is still on the way at least, per Daily Mail. But royal expert Richard Fitzsimons suggested the couple may have to look closer to home for their next project, floating ideas covering the duke's military service or Meghan's acting career as possibilities.

And yet, a royal expert explained why Meghan's future isn't so bright, since betting on the former "Suits" star hasn't paid off just yet. 

The Sussexes may have bitten off more than they can chew

Insiders informed The Sun that the Sussexes shouldn't have expected their ideas to get the green light simply because of who they are. Moreover, they noted that, when taking production budgets into account, the deal isn't actually worth that much. The source revealed, "Executives feel that in some aspects Harry and Meghan appeared to be naïve about how their deal would work." The fact the couple took it so hard when "Pearl" wasn't picked up exemplifies this lack of understanding.

"Some forget that Netflix is a business, so the commissioning executives and legal team have to act in the best interests of the brand," they noted. "Just because they are royalty, they are not treated any different to others." Although it may seem like everything Meghan Markle and Prince Harry touch turns to gold, in reality, they still have plenty of hoops to jump through.

However, the Sussexes might not be as out of touch as it seems. Another source told The Irish Sun that the network always advises on content, claiming this is common knowledge. "Nobody can expect to turn up, say this is what it is and then get money. It doesn't work like that. It never has," they argued. Meghan and Harry are also willing to compromise, with their team actively taking another look at "Pearl" before pitching elsewhere to see if anything needs to be changed to make it stronger.