They say you need to walk a mile in a man’s shoes to understand his life. But you’ll need to walk a lot further than that to get an understanding of what it’s like to be Elizabeth Alexandra May, aka Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain.
National Geographic (DStv 181) is doing just that on Sunday, 15 November at 21:00 with its documentary film Being The Queen, which goes inside the 70-year reign of The Queen, from her private upbringing, to assuming the throne and becoming a global Head of State.
“I have gained exclusive access to untapped archives while piecing together the complete story of Queen Elizabeth II, which is most often underscored by love and marriage – from abdication, Princess Margaret, the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and Prince William and Harry,” says executive producer and director Tom Jennings, who produced and directed Apollo: Missions To The Moon.
“It is my hope that when viewers witness the personal moments as The Queen leads her people through pivotal, historic occasions, they have a clear picture of the Monarch’s many fortunes and the struggles that shook her dynasty,” adds Tom.
She who rules
In case you didn’t know, Queen Elizabeth II was forced onto the throne in 1953 when she was just 27. Her father, King George IV, died suddenly and Elizabeth took on the role of Monarch of the Commonwealth. 70 years later and she’s still sitting on the throne, albeit with a lesser role as the British Prime Minister takes more control on her behalf.
“There are few people that are the subject of as much scrutiny and global fascination as the British royal family. This documentary will share captivating new insights into the life and longstanding reign of Queen Elizabeth II, with incredible depth and a treasure trove of never-seen-before material” said Evert van der Veer, Vice President, Media Networks, The Walt Disney Company Africa.
Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-reigning queen in history, but during that time she has managed to both stand up for her subjects on the international scene, while managing to keep as much of her family life away from the paparazzi cameras as possible.
Filming Being The Queen has allowed Tom and his team to get access to previously restricted content that almost no one in the world has seen. Here’s a taste of what you’ll see in Being The Queen:
- Exclusive never-before-seen interviews: newly digitised interviews taken from the US Library of Congress from 2002 documentary The Monarch from sources close to The Queen including: friends, confidants, private secretaries and politicians who worked with Queen Elizabeth
- Exclusive never-before-head interviews from the files of biographer Anne de Courcy, including Princess Margaret’s husband, Lord Snowden, talking about how The Queen handled the Aberfan mining tragedy in 1966 (private videos of The Queen’s visit to Aberfan are included)
- Rare radio broadcasts, including the BBC’s announcement of King George VI’s death and live coverage of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation in 1953
- Rate newspaper articles & photographs, including private family images and portraits, as well as photos from the archives of the Evening Standard newspaper
Watch Being The Queen on Sunday, 15 November on National Geographic (DStv 181) at 21:00
How to watch Being The Queen online
Get the DStv app on your device (iOS or Android). With the DStv app, the same channels you watch on your decoder at home are available for you to stream online and on your mobile device.