Snowdon and Margaret: Secrets of a Royal Marriage
Sunday May 9 at 11 pm ET/PT on CBC News Network
The divorce that caused shockwaves.Tony Snowdon and Princess Margaret were the most iconic couple of the Swinging 1960s. She was the Diana of her day. He was one of Britain's greatest photographers and together they made the royal family seem stylish and modern, mixing with artists, writers and pop stars. As one friend of the Snowdons' put it, "It was a fairy story". Sadly, it was a fairy story that came to a crashing end. Their volatile marriage ended in 1978 with a disastrous divorce, followed with a tabloid frenzy, dragging the royal family through the mud and undermining its authority with the public.
The Snowdons' was the first royal divorce in over four hundred years. At the time, Princess Margaret was blamed, accused of being a high handed royal madam who indulged in a scandalous relationship with a younger man, Roddy Llewellyn. Tony, as his friends commented, came out of the marriage "smelling of roses". He was seen as the 'wronged' husband.
This documentary takes a different and intriguing tack. Using archive footage and interviews with friends of the couple, it makes the case that it was Lord (Tony) Snowdon's character and behaviour that destroyed the marriage. Emotionally damaged by his childhood experience with a distant mother, he was unable to commit to one woman. Exceptionally highly sexed, he had a string of girlfriends, often simultaneously, even fathering a child by the wife of his best friend. His daughter, Polly Fry, was conceived around the time of his engagement to the Princess and was born while they were on their honeymoon.
Snowdown and Margaret: Secrets of a Royal Marriage is a new take on a relationship that defined an era, revealed for the first time on television by biographers, friends and family.
Produced by Wildcard Productions for Ch. 4 in the U.K.