We could not wait for the premiere of Lifetime’s “William & Kate,” which aired yesterday evening. DVRs were set, snacks were assembled, and tissues were placed close at hand. Though we’re certain that you canceled any and all plans to watch the movie live, here are the highlights, just in case:
The cast: Wills and Kate, played by New Zealander Nico Evers Swindell and native Briton Camilla Luddington looked, if not totally spot-on, similar enough to the real-life couple to be convincing. Luddington (despite an uncanny resemblance to NYC Prep’s Camille) was particulary well-cast — we couldn’t help but notice that her hair was as full and shiny as the real, live Kate Middleton’s! Not so lucky in the casting department, however, were Princes Charles and Harry. Ben Cross played Prince Charles as a sort of doddering, kindly grandfather type who takes an immediate liking to Kate. Justin Hanlon seemed to think he was playing Prince Harry as “arch,” but it registered more as “evil pixie” in his single scene.
The plot: Spoiler alert — it works out! The movie managed to cover Kate and William’s entire relationship (up to the proposal) in under two hours. It hit all the major milestones: Kate’s infamous sheer dress at the fashion show, the tabloid coverage of the relationship, the breakup, the proposal. Some things were a little too much for us. For example, we’re not 100% sure that the real life William didn’t serenade Kate in a ski chalet, but the scene in the film (he warbles “Lucky,” an original song written specifically for the movie! In front of everyone!) was way too silly to be credible or romantic. Also silly: the proposal scene, in which the green-screened Kenyan sunset was so distracting that we almost didn’t notice that all of their dialogue was totally muted. Come on, movie! We wanna know what (you think) he said!!!!!!
The clothes: Impressively, Luddington’s Kate wears several outfits reminiscent of now-iconic outfits worn by the real princess-to-be. There is the aforementioned sheer dress (which, sadly, was not at all reminiscent of the real thing), but she also wears a red coat with a black belt in one scene that closely resembles one she wore to celebrate St. Andrews’ 600th anniversary in February, and she wears a beige coat in another scene that looks an awful lot like the Burberry coat she wore in March during a visit to Belfast. They’re obviously not the same pieces, since we doubt that was in Lifetime’s budget — and we will get to that later — but they were strikingly close to her real-life ensembles.
The set: “William & Kate” was made very quickly… and it shows. St. Andrews, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the United Kingdom, has a dining hall in the film that looks like a multipurpose room in New Jersey. We saw folding tables. Additionally, the exterior shots of Prince William’s home were clearly still photographs of the palace, and the rest of the royal family is absent from the film.
Our verdict: Awesomely campy, and terrible in a totally expected and forgivable made-for-TV movie sort of way. The only drawback? It’s done nothing but whet our appetite for the real thing. At least we’ll have this to comfort us for the next week and a half!