Royal Family (documentary)

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Royal Family is a documentary about the family of Queen Elizabeth II, and was aired on 21 June 1969.[1][2] It was rebroadcast on ITV the following week.[2] The film was commissioned by the Queen to celebrate the investiture of her eldest son, Charles, as Prince of Wales.[3] The script was written by Antony Jay.[1][4]

The idea was to give the public a chance to see behind the scenes at Buckingham Palace, and show that the royal family were just like everyone else. On its broadcast, it was viewed by around two thirds of the population of the United Kingdom. It has not, however, been shown since, with many believing that the royal family were concerned that they were giving the impression that they were too ordinary. The filming of the documentary, which was the first time that cameras had been allowed to film for television, includes footage of the Queen, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and their children Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward.

In 2011, it was announced that clips from the documentary would be made available for public viewing as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. It formed part of an exhibition called Queen: Art and Image, which also featured photographs of the monarch from across the years.[5] Clips were also shown as part of the BBC documentary The Duke at 90 in 2011, to celebrate Prince Philip's 90th birthday.


  1. ^ a b "A long reign and a lost republic". Inside Story. 19 April 2012. Retrieved 15 August 2013. 
  2. ^ a b Richard Tomlinson (19 June 1994). "Trying to be useful". The Independent. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  3. ^ Bastin, Giselle (Summer 2009). "Filming the Ineffable: Biopics of the British Royal Family". Auto/Biography Studies 24 (1): 34–52. Retrieved 21 August 2013. 
  4. ^ Hardman, Robert (20 October 2011). "Yes, Ma'am". The Spectator. Retrieved 16 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Film clip of Royals 'banned by the Queen 40 years ago for making them look too ordinary' to be shown". Mail Online. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 13 June 2011.