The recent release of the documentary “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey” has been met with both acclaim and controversy. The documentary, directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Liz Garbus, follows Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle and her husband Prince Harry as they embark on a tour of Africa, sharing their experiences and personal perspectives about their lives as working members of the royal family, as well as their struggles with the press and public scrutiny.
The documentary has been hailed by many as a powerful and intimate look at the couple’s journey, but it has also been met with public criticism from the royal palace, especially over scenes of Harry discussing his strained relationship with his older brother, Prince William. In an interview with Deadline, Director Liz Garbus pushed back against the royal palace’s criticism of the film, claiming that Buckingham Palace is engaging in a campaign of disinformation to “discredit” the documentary.
Garbus said that she found it “surprising and disappointing” that the palace would resort to “semantic side-stepping” to dispute the accuracy of the documentary after agreeing in advance to cooperate with the film’s production crew. She said that Buckingham Palace’s “selective debunking” of the documentary was meant to “damage the acclaim” of the film and create a “narrative contrary to the truth” that she and her team had presented.
Garbus went on to challenge the palace’s argument that the documentary’s portrayal of Harry and Meghan’s relationship with the media was unfair, pointing out that the film reflects the couple’s own subjective experience with the press, which she views as part of the purpose of documentary filmmaking. She also noted that “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey” is not a news program and therefore should not be held to the same journalistic standards as a traditional news broadcast.
Garbus concluded the interview with a strong message to Buckingham Palace, saying that she “utterly reject[s] the palace’s attempts to discredit the film and its creators” and that she stands by the documentary “100 percent”. She added that she hopes the public “will make up their own minds” about the film, rather than relying on the palace’s “spin machine” to shape their views.
Overall, Liz Garbus’s powerful rebuke of the royal palace’s response to “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey” highlights the ongoing controversy surrounding the recently released documentary. Whether viewers ultimately accept Garbus’s version of events or those from Buckingham Palace, the director’s fiery response to the palace’s criticisms has surely injected some much-needed life into the ongoing debate.