Prince Charles Banned Princess Diana From Participating in a 'Disastrous' TV Show

There were a number of things Princess Diana wasn’t allowed to do after she married Prince Charles. As one of the most senior members of the royal family, the Princess of Wales had to follow a set of rules and protocols that included what she wore. For instance, Diana wasn’t permitted to wear high heels around her husband because they were almost the same height so if she did she would tower over the future king. Prince Charles also wouldn’t allow his wife to appear on a TV show even though his siblings were on it.

Here’s what show the Prince of Wales banned Princess Diana from taking part in and why.

The TV show that several members of the royal family were on

Back in 1987, Prince Charles youngest brother, Prince Edward, had an idea to have members of the royal family appear in a TV show. The program was called It’s a Royal Knockout and in it Prince Andrew, Sarah Ferguson, Princess Anne, and Prince Edward dressed in pantomime Elizabethan costumes and competed in silly games with celebrities.

Some of the stars who were on the show included John Travolta, Cliff Richard, and Sheena Easton. But instead of being a big hit, It’s a Royal Knockout was a PR nightmare and labeled “disastrous.” It even ended up on another show titled Now That’s Embarrassing: The 80s, which like the name states explores some of the most embarrassing happenings in the 1980s.

Prince Charles refused to let Diana particpate in it

According to Express, singer Torah Wilcox who helped organize It’s a Royal Knockout said that Prince Charles did not allow his first wife to take part in the show. “Princess Diana wanted to do it. [Prince] Edward wanted her to do it but Prince Charles banned Diana from doing it,” Wilcox recalled.

Comedian Rob Deering added: “It was the royal family, but not all of them. Certain royals were there but the queen certainly wasn’t there. Prince Charles wasn’t there.”

It’s believed that the Prince of Wales’ stance opposing that Princess Diana be involved in the show might have come directly from Queen Elizabeth II.

In his biography on the monarch, author Ben Pimlott said that not many people within the royal household approved of the show. “It was a terrible mistake,” he wrote, adding, “The queen was against it. There was not a single courtier who did not think it was a mistake.”

The princess reportedly wanted to work in TV and movies

While Diana never went in front of the camera for a game show or reality competition, her former voice coach said the princess did want to start working in TV and film. Stewart Pearce, who was Diana’s voice coach and began working with her a few years before her death, revealed that the Princess of Wales had plans to move to Malibu and pursue a career in Hollywood. 

“There were a number of major projects brewing in her consciousness through offers that had been offered to her,” Pearce told the Daily Mail. “But one of the major opportunities that she wanted to create was to start developing documentaries about three charitable interests that would then be assimilated into major movie pictures. She was planning on spending a lot of time in Hollywood.”

If Diana was eyeing a career behind the camera she never had a chance to pursue it. The princess died following a car crash in Paris on Aug. 31, 1997.

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