Legal drama Suits has seen a record-breaking revival in recent weeks, as the show which gave Meghan Markle her big break in Hollywood became a streaming success story, four years after wrapping its final season.
In July, the show—which originally aired from 2011 to 2019 on the USA Network and centers around a fictional law firm, its employees and clients—became the most viewed acquired title for a single week ever across streaming services in the U.S., according to data compiled by the Nielsen market-research firm.
For the viewing period June 26 to July 2, over 3.1 billion minutes worth of episodes from the show’s nine seasons were streamed across the U.S., after Netflix added it to its library on June 23. The show is also streaming on Peacock.
With the series drawing in viewers old and new, speculation about a potential reboot has begun to circulate, begging the question, could viewers ever see Meghan reprise her popular role as paralegal Rachel Zane?
This, entertainment expert Mark Boardman told Newsweek, would not come without its share of problems.
Discussing the possibility of a Suits reboot, Boardman, the founder of entertainment news site MarkMeets, said it was “unlikely for now,” given the current issues facing Hollywood (notably the joint SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes), but added that it could “potentially be a winner.”
“Whilst now may not be the right time for a reboot to be on the cards, any talk of a reboot following such a positive reaction is a good dilemma for any show bosses to have, with the show ranking at an impressive number eight on the Netflix global Top 10,” he said.
With Meghan being a key draw for the show and a driving interest in the reason for its renewed popularity, Boardman said that the duchess could be a make-or-break factor for studio bosses and co-stars alike.
“A successful reboot isn’t solely dependent on the popularity of the original series; it hinges on multiple factors, one of which is undoubtedly the potential return of key cast members, including the much-loved Rachel Zane,” he said.
“The Duchess of Sussex’s presence could be a linchpin in recreating the magic of the original show and ensuring a smooth transition for fans into the new iteration.”
If Meghan were to turn down the chance to reprise her role, having effectively retired from acting after her relationship with Prince Harry became serious in 2017 and since saying she was “done” with that side of her career, Boardman suggested there could also be benefits to the show.
“Although her absence would be a huge blow for studio bosses,” he said, “it could alternatively open up new storylines and ensure any returning stars are not overshadowed following Rachel’s character marrying her onscreen love interest, Mike Ross (Patrick J. Adams), who also left the show, making a believable return hard for show writers and producers.”
A Suits reboot without Meghan poses a potential problem for studio heads, but her cooperation could equally cause another, Boardman suggested. With the duchess’ star power having grown exponentially since marrying into the royal family in 2018, she is now in a position to make demands that the studio may not be willing, or able, to meet.
Boardman highlighted the potential for a “major rift” between senior cast members developing when negotiating contracts, and also the possibility that some “may not be ready” to join a reboot. He also raised the possibility that Meghan could make demands relating to her character, both in terms of screen presence and direction as a means to further and “protect her career” in the entertainment industry.
“In the real world, Meghan Markle’s career in acting came to a halt after her departure from Suits, and, whilst her absence was notable leaving the show after the seventh season, the show had a dedicated fan base that continued to watch and support it until its conclusion,” he said. “Meghan will be watching closely [for] any reports surrounding Suits and be working on, or at least keeping other projects in mind, for the remainder of the year into 2024.”
For her part, Meghan has made it clear that she wants to develop her career behind the camera, telling Variety in 2022 that her joint production company with Prince Harry, Archewell Productions, was investing in the development of scripted projects.
When asked outright if she would ever consider a return to the screen, the duchess said no, but did not rule it out completely.
“I’m done,” she said. “I guess, never say never, but my intention is to absolutely not.”
No announcement about a potential reboot for Suits or future development for the show has been made by the series’ original broadcaster, the USA Network, or its parent company, NBC Universal.
Newsweek approached representatives of Meghan Markle and NBC Universal via email for comment on Tuesday.
James Crawford-Smith is Newsweek‘s royal reporter, based in London. You can find him on Twitter at @jrcrawfordsmith and read his stories on Newsweek‘s .
Do you have a question about King Charles III, William and Kate, Meghan and Harry, or their family that you would like our experienced royal correspondents to answer? Email Support@springupdates.com. We’d love to hear from you.