Royal Weddings in Movies, TV Shows

2:52 PM 5/18/2018

by Katherine Schaffstall

From 'Ella Enchanted' to 'The Crown,' nuptials involving princesses, queens and other members of royalty have been a frequent screen setting.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are just hours away from tying the knot at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, with the pair's engagement announced at the end of November. 

Weddings have long been a popular component of movies and TV shows. For many viewers, the only thing more romantic than a wedding is one that’s royal. While projects like The Crown and The Young Victoria feature ceremonies based on real-life courtships, other productions such as The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement and Gossip Girl have taken inspiration from the royal lifestyle to depict elaborate nuptials.

As the latest royal wedding approaches, take a look at similar ceremonies from movies and TV shows.

  • 'Ella Enchanted' (2004)

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    Anne Hathaway plays Ella, a girl cursed at a young age with the “gift of obedience” by a ditzy fairy named Lucinda (Vivica A. Fox). Following the death of her father, Ella is stuck living a miserable life with her unbearable stepmother and stepsisters. An unhappy Ella goes on a mission to find Lucinda and break the curse. She meets Prince Charmont (Hugh Dancy) on her journey and the two develop feelings for each other. When Ella learns that the prince’s uncle plans to kill him in order to take over the throne, Ella interferes and saves Charmont’s life. The film concludes with Ella and Charmont’s wedding, which features a sing-a-long and choreographed dance to “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart.”

  • ‘The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement’ (2004)

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    In the sequel to the 2001 film, The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement finds recent college graduate Mia (Anne Hathaway) coming to terms with the fact that she must take over the role as Queen of Genovia when her grandmother Clarisse (Julie Andrews) steps down from the throne. The only way Mia can ensure the she will be next in line for the title is if gets married by the end of the month. While much of the film follows Mia’s journey to find a husband, Clarisse ends up as a bride at the end of the film when she spontaneously marries her longtime bodyguard Joe (Hector Elizondo). 

  • ‘Marie Antoinette’ (2006)

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    At the age of 15, Austria native Marie Antoinette (Kirsten Dunst) marries Louis XVI of France (Jason Schwartzman) to form an alliance between the two rival countries. While they have an elaborate wedding with more than 6,000 guests in attendance, the marriage has a rocky start when they are pressured to immediately produce a new heir to the throne.

  • ‘Enchanted’ (2007)

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    The animated Giselle (Amy Adams) meets Prince Edward (James Marsden), the man she believes is her one true love, and thinks she has finally found her happy ever after once they become engaged. When the evil Queen Larissa (Susan Sarandon) learns that there will be a new princess, she magically transports Giselle to a live-action New York City to prevent her from taking the crown. While Giselle becomes enthralled in a new life with the help of Robert (Patrick Dempsey), Edward enters the live-action world to find his fiancée. As Giselle and Robert fall in love, Edward finds his true love in Robert’s former fiancée Nancy (Idina Menzel) and they get married in the animated world.

     

  • ‘The Duchess’ (2008)

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    The Duchess follows the life of Duchess of Devonshire Georgina (Kiera Knightley). Georgina enters into a contractual marriage with the much older William Cavendish (Ralph Fiennes) in order to ensure a male heir to the throne. While the wedding may have been close to picture perfect, their marriage is anything but seamless.  

  • ‘The Young Victoria’ (2009)

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    Emily Blunt plays Queen Victoria in the 2009 film that chronicles the first few years of Victoria’s reign as queen, as well as her romance with Prince Albert (Rupert Friend). When a crisis leads to the downfall of Victoria’s reputation, she confides in Albert and the two create a strong bond. Victoria ends up proposing to Albert because protocol prevents him from bringing up the topic of marriage. 

  • 'Once Upon a Time' (2011)

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    The ABC fantasy series kicks off with the nuptials of Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Prince Charming (Josh Dallas). The fairytale wedding takes a dark turn when the Evil Queen (Lana Parrilla) crashes the wedding, where Snow and the prince remind her that she is no longer in power. The bitter Evil Queen promises to ruin the newlyweds' lives by taking everything they care about away from them. 

  • 'Gossip Girl' (2012)

    Left, Photofest; Right, Getty Images

    The centennial episode of the CW series includes a wedding for Upper East Side queen Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester) and Prince Louis of Monaco (Hugo Becker). In true Gossip Girl fashion, the ceremony takes a dramatic turn when the gossip website leaks a video of Blair confessing her true feelings for Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick). The wedding continues, though Blair is informed during the reception that Louis' love is not real and that the wedding was just a contractual show. The episode concludes with a dramatic reveal of Gossip Girl’s temporary identity. 

  • ‘Reign’ (2014)

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    The CW series features a royal wedding halfway through its first season during the episode "The Consummation." After being in a love triangle with Bash (Torrance Coombs) and Francis (Toby Regbo), Queen Mary (Adelaid Kane) is pressured to choose a husband and decides to marry the latter in a grand celebration. The episode also includes the revelation that Clarissa (Katie Boland) is not dead, as was presumed earlier. 

  • ‘Victoria’ (2016)

    Courtesy of PBS

    Similar to The Young Victoria, the PBS series also featured the wedding of Queen Victoria (this time played by Jenna Coleman) and Prince Albert (Tom Hughes). The first-season episode “An Ordinary Woman” follows Victoria picking out her wedding dress, debating which uncle will escort her down the aisle and handling Albert’s ego regarding the fact that he won’t be given a royal title. The episode emphasizes the tension between the couple created by the lack of royal perks Albert will get out of the marriage.

  • 'The Crown' (2016)

    Courtesy of Netflix

    The Netflix original series kicked off with a royal wedding. The Crown recreated the wedding of Queen Elizabeth (Claire Foy) and Prince Philip (Matt Smith), who renounced his royal title to make the marriage possible. The elaborate recreation of the 1947 ceremony includes a replica of the Queen’s real dress that reportedly took seven weeks to make and cost $37,000