Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Take Longer on First Netflix Content Than Obamas

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have taken longer than the Obamas with their first Netflix content.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex signed a multi-year mega deal in September 2020 and have two projects in the pipeline: animated series Pearl and documentary Heart of Invictus.

More than 16 months on, however, there is still no release date for either.

The couple have had busy lives during that time, including taking time out following the birth of their baby daughter, Lilibet Mountbatten-Windsor.

Yet it places them behind Barack and Michelle Obama in terms of time from first announcement to first content.

The Obama's, under their Higher Ground Productions company, have also signed their own big money Netflix deal, announced in May 2018.

Their first documentary, American Factory, premiered at Sundance Film Festival in January 2019, just eight months later.

The 1 hour 50 minute feature film's full release on Netflix came in August that year, 15 months after the deal was announced.

There may be many factors affecting the turnaround time for the projects Harry and Meghan are working on and both are series rather than one off films.

However, with their Spotify podcast deal also yet to produce anything more than a single festive special, the pressure is mounting for the couple to make good on the publicity surrounding their high-profile partnerships.

Spotify partner Gimlet Projects is currently advertising for its own production team to help deliver Archewell Audio with Meghan and Harry, even after the couple signed their own head of audio Rebecca Sananes in July 2021.

Now Netflix is also advertising for a production designer to work on Pearl, Meghan's animated series following a 12-year-old girl inspired by influential women from history.

The job advert states calls the show a "heartfelt adventure comedy series" about a girl who "comes from the mind of Meghan."

Any successful applicant will help "develop, create, and support the aesthetic vision" and "design multiple worlds representing various time periods throughout history."

The recruitment drive has been interpreted by detractors in the British media as evidence the couple have been unable to deliver by themselves, with The Sun quoting an unnamed source suggesting Spotify took responsibility for delivering Archewell audio into their own hands.

An alternative explanation could also be that camp Sussex is going into overdrive after a busy 2021 in which their Oprah Winfrey interview and the birth of their daughter dominated.

Harry's first Netflix project, Heart of Invictus, is also tied to the Invictus Games 2020, which thanks to COVID is now taking place in April, 2022, at The Hague, in Holland.

Last year, Prince Harry said of the project: "I couldn't be more excited for the journey ahead or prouder of the Invictus community for continuously inspiring global healing, human potential and continued service."

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry at Recording Studio
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit the recording studio of radio station Reprezent 107.3FM, in Brixton, London, on January 9, 2018. The couple are yet to release content in relation to their Netflix deal. Chris Jackson/Getty Images