Nelson Mandela’s niece, Ndileka Mandela, has accused Prince Harry and Meghan Markle of stealing her grandfather’s lyrics to make money. The controversy centers on the royal family’s Netflix documentary, “Live to Lead,” made as part of their $100 million deal with the streaming platform.
In the trailer for the documentary, which includes interviews with public figures such as Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Greta Thunberg, Prince Harry says:”It was inspired by Nelson Mandela, who once said that the important thing in life is not just how we live.” Meghan then added:”It is the difference we make in the lives of others that determines the importance of the life we lead.”Mandela’s use of the famous quote angered Ndileka Mandela, who argued that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex benefited from the legacy of the former South African president.
Ndileka Mandela, director of the Thembekile Mandela Foundation, told The Australian, “They used his quotes in the documentary to attract people and make millions of dollars that the Mandela family didn’t benefit from.” Harry needs to be authentic and stick to his own story; how does Grandpa’s life relate to his own?
Ndileka Mandela said she was “deeply disappointed” that her grandfather, the South African anti-apartheid activist who served 27 years in prison, was used to promote a new Netflix documentary, Prince Harry and Meghan. “I know the Nelson Mandela Foundation supports this initiative, but people have been stealing Grandpa’s quotes for years and using his legacy because they know his name sells well—Harry and Meghan are no different than them,” she said.
This is not the first time Harry and Meghan have been criticized for drawing some risky similarities to Nelson Mandela. In 2022, Meghan told The Cut that at the 2019 London premiere of the live-action remake of The Lion King, one of the actors compared her royal wedding to Nam’s reaction. Africa for Mandela’s release from prison. “He [the actor] looked at me, and he was like a light.” I said:I just need you to know:”When you marry this family, we will rejoice in the streets as we did when Mandela was released from prison.”
The anecdote made headlines in the British media, and it took a lot of work to find a translator for The Lion King. Only one of the film’s actors is from South Africa: John Kani, who plays the famous monkey Rafiki. But he objected to Markle’s story. “I’ve never met Meghan Markle. It seems like a sham on her part.