The TV spot featuring a look-alike Queen, Prince William and Kate goes up, but it doesn’t stay that way, as media outlets ’round the globe are reporting the Chinese commercial, portraying the Duchess as a “gold digger,” is being pulled from sites like YouTube as quickly as it goes up.
The video that’s ruffling so many feathers was produced by officials from the tourism arm of Chengdu — a city of 14 million people in southwest China.
The ad features three stunning look-alikes as William, Kate and the Queen.
They’re shown standing outside of the royal palace in, naturally, the rain (it always rains in England, of course!).
Suspend your disbelief: They’re waiting for a taxi to haul them the “slumming” way to the Jubilee celebrations.
And it was the Queen’s idea!
She indicates it’s the “recession” after all.
You’ll do a double-take when you see the actress portraying Kate whine: “I just don’t understand why we cannot take the royal limo. I didn’t marry into royalty to schlep around in a taxi.”
You’ll also do a double-take when you hear Will’s eerie doppelgänger respond: “The commoners want to see us tightening our belts and all that.”
Fake Kate’s response? “‘Rubbish, people want to see that they can be like us if they just work hard.”
It’s at this point that the Queen quickly cuts down the daughter-in-law (and former “commoner”): “Like you did?”
The Daily Mail reminds us that Kate got a lot of grief for not having a full-time job while dating the prince.
You can see the spot in its entirety here. But who knows for long? Several media outlets are reporting vids of the spot, which the world didn’t even know about until Monday, have already been pulled on YouTube and elsewhere.
That could have something to do with the fact that many Brits aren’t laughing.
Plus, with it being a Chengdu city creation, no doubt officials are scrambling to do damage control on what’s become known as the “gold-digger” ad online.
While it’s questionable just how the Chinese tourism industry ties to the royal family, the commercial is supposed to promote a fleet of black “panda” taxis adorned with paintings of the bears. Hence, the long wait for a taxi in the rain.
Perhaps some of the cab commercial controversy comes from its timing.
The spot falls right on the heels of Prince William turning 30, at which time he inherited around $15 million — as his late mother Princess Di intended.