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Queerty: Patriotic passion: Why ‘Red, White & Royal Blue’ is a must-see LGBTQ+ movie


BookTok’s obsession with Casey McQuiston’s Red, White & Royal Blue made it clear there’s no shortage of people wanting to read about the British prince and America’s first son banging (fall in love, i.e.), and now it promises to be one of the most anticipated gay movie releases of the decade.  

We’re talking about Call Me By Your Name and Brokeback Mountain type of cultural impact (RIP, Bros), but for the first time, it wasn’t an artistic gamble but a demand from the 1.4 billion active users on TikTok’s literary hashtag phenomenon. 

Don’t sleep on the fictional gay royal enemy-to-lovers plotline that Gen Z launched into the Hollywood limelight. 

Plot summary

Tony-winner Matthew López will make his film feature debut with an adaptation based on Casey McQuiston’s book, a queer romance novel that made TikTok audiences squirt with praises. 

Red, White & Royal Blue follows a forbidden romance type of vibe between the British prince and United States’ first son after a public scandal forces the enemies to pretend to be friends to save face between the nations. As you might expect, they fall in love instead and must keep it secret. 

If you’re not excited yet, the film received an R rating from the Motion Picture Association of America for “language, some sexual content, and partial nudity.” And, seriously, hallelujah! Timothée Chamalette screwing a peach or a cannibal can only get us so far. 

Cast and characters 

Naturally, the casting of the fictional royal and presidential twunks getting it on was detrimental to the movie’s success. Neither actor cast as lead publicly identifies as gay, and both have been rumored to have dated former female co-stars. However, they keep mum about their intimate relationships.

Nicholas Galitzine

Nicholas previously starred alongside Camila Cabello in Cinderella, plays Britain’s Prince Henry.

Taylor Zakhar Perez

Also in The Kissing Booth, Taylor takes the role of America’s first son Alex Claremont-Diaz. 

“Meeting with and auditioning literally hundreds of actors over these past several months has been a painstaking labor of love that has brought us this diverse and extraordinary cast, led so fantastically by Nick and Taylor,” López told Variety. “I cannot wait for the fans of the book (and indeed for the world) to find out how remarkably gifted and perfect these two actors are for bringing Henry and Alex to life.”

Uma Thurman

The delectable star will serve as America’s first female president whose reelection depends on her son keeping it in his pants. 

Other talent you might spot:

  • Rachel Hilson
  • Clifton Collins Jr.
  • Malcolm Atobrah
  • Aneesh Sheth
  • Stephen Fry
  • Sarah Shahi

Themes of love and acceptance

At the heart of the YA book, there are three coming-out stories. Prince Herny is gay, Alex is bisexual, and then they must tell their nations they fell in love. 

Their budding forbidden romance is complicated by the fact Alex’s mom is seeking presidential reelection, and his newfound British bedmate might ruin her approval rating. 

Ultimately, Red, White & Royal Blue deals with the young men’s responsibility to their nations and their right to privacy, themselves, and each other. It’s not clear just how closely the movie will resemble the book and what creative liberties it will take, surely to be criticized by TikTok. 

Social media’s love affair with Red, White, and Royal Blue 

Perez and Diaz promoted their chemistry when filming in June 2022, and they showcased on social media the fun dynamic between them. The internet lost it picturing the upcoming rendezvous between the hotties. 

Hopefully, it remains once they start to lock lips. 

ICYMI: #RWRBMovie is officially in production! You’re welcome x pic.twitter.com/ilWv1L0ddq

— Red, White & Royal Blue on Prime (@RWRBonPrime) June 21, 2022

How to stream the movie

Red, White & Royal Blue is set to be released on Amazon Prime Video on August 8, 2023. So if you’re not on the streaming service, now’s the time to create an email for another trial membership. 

We’re excited to watch!

Clearly, the gay film of the year has already been picked. What remains to be seen is whether it will land with audiences with such high expectations. Popularity is a double-edged sword. 

However, Red, White & Royal Blue is groundbreaking in how it arrived in Hollywood, pioneered by Gen Z and their passion for queer literature. 

There are so many worthy queer books to add to your shelves, and the upcoming release of this film shows that if you love something, say it! No matter how indie it might seem. That’s how unique or controversial ideas become mainstream cult staples. 

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