Harry & Meghan becomes Netflix’s biggest documentary debut yet

In lead-up to second batch of three episodes, streaming service reveals first part racked up 81.55m viewing hours around the world

Harry & Meghan, Netflix’s documentary series about Britain’s Prince Harry and his wife, racked up more viewing time on the streaming service than any other documentary during its first week, the company said on Tuesday.

The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan recorded 81.55m viewing hours around the world after its debut last Thursday, Netflix said, “the highest view hours of any documentary title in a premiere week”. More than 28m households watched at least part of the series.

Harry & Meghan was the second-most watched English-language series on Netflix globally between 5 and 11 December, behind Tim Burton’s Addams Family drama Wednesday.

Harry & Meghan was the No 1 English-language series during the week in Britain, and No 2 in Australia and the US. It made Netflix’s television top 10 in 85 countries.

In the first three episodes, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made a series of disclosures, with Meghan recalling her first death threat and Harry talking about wearing disguises to their dates amid huge media attention.

The couple were paid somewhere between US$100m and US$150m by Netflix to deliver scripted series, documentaries and children’s programming over several years.

They have hit back at criticism over their sharing of personal video clips and photographs in the documentary, with a spokesperson for the couple saying privacy was not a key reason behind the couple stepping back from royal duties and leaving the UK.

“The Duke and Duchess have never cited privacy as the reason for stepping back,” the couple’s global press secretary said. “This distorted narrative was intended to trap the couple into silence … They are choosing to share their story, on their terms, and yet the tabloid media has created an entirely untrue narrative that permeates press coverage and public opinion. The facts are right in front of them.”

The second batch of three Harry & Meghan episodes will be released on Netflix on Thursday, focusing on their decision to step away from royal duties.

“They were happy to lie to protect my brother,” Harry says in the trailer, while Meghan says: “I wasn’t being thrown to the wolves, I was being fed to the wolves.”


Sian Cain

The GuardianTramp

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