Charles’ plan to get Camilla accepted as Queen FOILED as Diana doc sees popularity drop
A Controversial documentary featuring a video of Princess Diana talking intimately about her life gave Channel 4 its best ratings in over a year, it emerged yesterday.
Diana: In Her Own Words, which pulled in an average of 3.5 million viewers and a peak audience of 4.1 million, also became the most-watched documentary on the channel since Benefits Street in 2014.
But the programme, which was shown on Sunday night, may also have a lasting impact on Royal hopes of altering public opinion, thereby allowing Prince Charles to make Camilla his Queen when he becomes King.
The documentary featured Diana speaking candidly about her courtship and s-x life with Charles, her troubled marriage and public life.
She revealed she met the Prince just 13 times before they married.
Royal experts warned yesterday that the programme, coming on top of countless other reminders of the infidelities that brought the Royal family to crisis point in the 1990s, had damaged Charles and Camilla in this 20th anniversary year of Diana’s death.
Whether the damage will be fleeting or more longer lasting remains to be seen, they said.
Royal experts said a welter of material published over the summer, including a new biography of Camilla by Penny Junor and other reminders of the breakdown of Charles and Diana’s marriage, has told the story for a new generation too young to remember what happened 20 years ago – and brought it all back for millions of Britons who witnessed it first time around.
Sally Bedell Smith, whose biography of the heir to the throne, Prince Charles: The Passions And Paradoxes Of An Improbable Life, was published earlier this year, pointed out that Charles had deliberately avoided giving his side of the drama in public and so it remained a one-sided story.
She was in no doubt that Charles and Camilla had been damaged by the documentary and other coverage showing Diana’s pain.
“It’s her voice that you are hearing again and in some cases for the first time,” she said.
Asked if it would cause long-term damage to Charles and Camilla, she said: “It’s very difficult to tell. I think it will have caused some short-term damage, because it has stirred up memories of all that happened in the 1980s and 1990s all over again.”
She said she believed Charles wanted to make Camilla his Queen, despite his office insisting – since he married her in 2005 – that she will be called “Princess Consort” when he is King, in deference to the public’s affection for Diana.
Joe Little of Majesty Magazine described the documentary as “muck-raking”.
He said: “I think it made very uncomfortable viewing at times and also it struck me as slightly odd why she would have chosen to discuss such sensitive matters with her voice coach.”
Asked if the documentary and other revelations had damaged Charles’ hopes of making Camilla his Queen, he said: “I’d like to hope not, but it certainly isn’t going to help their cause, because it puts them in a damaging light.”
Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, and one of her best friends, Rosa Monckton, have criticised the use of the footage, arguing it was never intended for broadcast and is a betrayal of her privacy.
But Channel 4 said it gave the Princess a voice and placed it “front and centre” in the run-up to the 20th anniversary of her shocking death in a car crash in Paris on August 31 1997.
Kensington Palace, the household of Diana’s sons, the Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry, declined to comment on the documentary.
Source: EXPRESS CO UK
Tags: Diana, Brother, Earl Spencer, Friends, Front and Centre, 20th Century, Shocking Death, August, Household, Duke of Cambridge, Prince Harry, Damaging Light, Sensitive, Struck, Viewing, Muck-ranking, Affection for Diana, Princess Consort, King, Future King, Queen Elizabeth II