Could the royal rumors be true? Some 50 years ago in 1969, in an effort to boost public opinion of the royal family, Queen Elizabeth herself allowed a crew of BBC filmmakers inside Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Sandringham and Balmoral to shoot a "day in the life" style documentary of what really goes on behind palace walls, according to the recent ABC two-part documentary The Story of the Royals.
Yep, the unprecedented access was allowed for a cool 18 months. After that, the 38 hours of footage—which, according to Smithsonian, was way too long for Queen Eliz—was edited down into a two-hour documentary that hit the British airwaves on June 21, 1969.
A whopping 37 million people tuned into watch, but here's the kicker: After it aired, Queen Elizabeth is said to have regretted her decision to permit camera crews to "normalize" the royal family and requested required that it be pulled from the network archives immediately, never to be broadcast again, according to the Daily Mail.
But here's the crazy part: For special occasions, Queen Eliz does allow certain clips to be released. For example, there was a snippet of Prince Charles and Princess Anne eating breakfast with their "mum" that was provided to the National Portrait Gallery for the queen's Diamond Jubilee in 2011. And yet another clip was released in celebration of Prince Philip turning 90 years old.
Where is it now? Supposedly, the footage is buried deep in the royal archives at Windsor Castle. Dun dun dun.
The bottom line—and this is backed up by the ABC doc that aired this week—is that the film exists. Why the queen keeps it (and the remaining 36 hours of footage) under lock and key may forever be a (royal) mystery to us.