A top Spotify podcast executive has called Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ‘f***ing grifters’ after they produced a single 13-episode series of a podcast for the company and then parted ways.
The end of the couple’s reported $20 million deal was announced Thursday night, three years after it was signed.
Spotify and Sussex audio production company Archewell Audio released a joint statement saying they have “mutually agreed to part ways and are proud of the series we have created together”.
Bill Simmons, head of podcast innovation and monetization at Spotify, condemned the pair in an episode of his own podcast on Friday.
‘The fucking crooks. This is the podcast we should have started with them,” he said.
“I have to get drunk one night and tell the Zoom story I had with Harry to try and help him with a podcast idea. It’s one of my best stories.
Bill Simmons (left), who sold his podcast and sports journalism company The Ringer to Spotify for $200 million in 2020, now works as a podcast innovation manager at Spotify. On Friday he described the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (right) as ‘f****** crooks’ after parting ways with the business
Meghan Markle’s Spotify podcast Archetypes will not be renewed for a second season
Simmons, a sportswriter, founded sports and pop culture website and podcast network The Ringer, and sold it to Spotify in 2020 for $200 million.
He then joined Spotify, and has long criticized the couple.
Last January, he lambasted Prince Harry, saying it was “embarrassing” to be affiliated with the same company.
“Shoot that guy in the sun,” he said, according to sports website The Big Lead.
“I’m so tired of this guy. What does he bring to the table? He just complains about bullshit and keeps giving interviews.
‘Who gives as ***? Who cares about your life?
You weren’t even the favorite son. You live in f****** Montecito and you just sell documentaries and podcasts and nobody cares what you have to say about anything unless you talk about the royal family and so that you don’t complain about them.
Spotify recently laid off staff and cut big-name talent in favor of its focus on the creator economy.
The streaming giant has announced that it will lay off around 200 staff members – about 2% of its workforce – who work within its podcast teams. He cited difficulties in monetizing podcasts, despite its popularity with listeners.
Markle’s Spotify podcast, Archetypes, will not be renewed for a second season.
The decision to scrap the Duchess of Sussex’s show, which explores ‘labels that try to hold women back’, follows discussions months ago over its renewal for a second series.
Insiders close to the audio giant say the royal couple have failed to meet the productivity benchmark required to receive full payment, The Wall Street Journal has reported.
Markle, however, still plans to create more podcasts and find a new home for her series, which previously featured her friend and tennis star pop sensation Serena Williams. Mariah Carey and South African comedian Trevor Noah.
Archetypes launched in August last year, exploring “labels that try to hold women back”. The Duke and Duchess are said to have signed the deal for $20million, but won’t receive the full payment as it hasn’t hit the productivity benchmark
Meghan signed off on her 12th episode of the Archetypes podcast series with a thought-provoking piece of poetry about survival
The end of the show comes after sources close to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex claimed the couple would stop making tell-all Netflix documentaries, posting memoirs and sitting down for interviews about the Royal Family , because they have “nothing more to say”.
The talent agency that recently signed Meghan, WME, told the Wall Street Journal: “The team behind Archetypes remain proud of the podcast they created at Spotify.
“Meghan continues to develop more content for the Archetype audience on another platform.”
The podcast reached the top of the Spotify charts the week of its premiere.
Meghan signed her 13th and final episode of Archetypes with a defiant piece of poetry about survival – but made no mention of a potential second series.
Closing the show, which featured men for the first time, she quoted post-war Greek poet Dinos Christianopoulos and said, “What haven’t you done to bury me? But you forgot that I was a seed.
Talks to release more content from Archwell – the production company owned by the royal couple – are ongoing, the Wall Street Journal reported.
There are also suggestions that Meghan could soon seek to bring back her wellness and lifestyle blog The Tig, in a bid to compete with Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop website, which is reportedly worth $250million. .
It comes amid reports the pair will stop making documentaries and tell-all books as they have ‘nothing left to say’
The royal couple have made millions since arriving in California. Prince Harry Spare’s explosive memoir was part of a $20million book deal
Since officially leaving the Royal Family and moving to California in 2020, the Duke and Duchess have pursued a number of different avenues to generate income.
This includes Prince Harry’s explosive memoir, Spare, which he created as part of a $20 million deal with Penguin Books.
The couple have also teamed up with Netflix to produce the documentary series Harry And Meghan, with the streaming giant paying the pair $100 million for the six-episode series.
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