The U.K.-based production company behind “Deal or No Deal” is shutting down claims from Meghan Markle that she was “objectified” during her time on the game show.
The production company’s chief content officer Lucas Green was asked by Variety if he agrees with Markle’s comments that the show’s briefcase models were “objectified bimbos.”
Green told the outlet, “No, but we are constantly evolving the format so that it isn’t the same show it was 15 plus years ago.”
Green continued, “A lot of work goes into modernizing our formats to ensure they represent our values as a company and wider society. The U.K. version, for example, will continue to use members of the public from all walks of life to open the boxes [instead of models].”
In October, Markle discussed her time as a briefcase model on “Deal or No Deal” on her “Archetypes” podcast with guest Paris Hilton. The Duchess of Sussex said she quit the game show after a year because she was “objectified.”
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“I was so much more than what was being objectified on the stage,” Markle said. “I didn’t like feeling forced to be all looks and little substance.”
She claimed that the women featured as models on the show would get spray tans and apply false eyelashes before walking on stage. “There was a very cookie-cutter idea of precisely what we should look like,” Markle shared.
“It was solely about beauty, and not necessarily about brains,” she continued at the time. “I was surrounded by smart women on that stage with me, but that wasn’t the focus of why we were there and I would end up leaving with this pit in my stomach. Like I said, I was thankful for the job but not for how it made me feel, which was not smart.”
The podcast episode was titled “Breaking Down the Bimbo.”
Markle appeared on the U.S. version of “Deal or No Deal” from 2006-2007. The show was hosted by Howie Mandel. Markle was one of a number of women who wore glamorous outfits as they opened briefcases to reveal contestants’ prizes.
Markle’s podcast sparked backlash from former models on the popular game show, many of whom slammed the Duchess of Sussex for claiming they were treated like “bimbos” at work.
“Everyone on the show knew their role, knew the image, auditioned, volunteered and accepted the job. I do not share her experience at all. I never felt objectified,” former “Deal or No Deal” model Patricia Kara told Fox News Digital in October.
Markle revealed on her podcast that there had been different beauty stations to prepare for the game show – including a section where you could add “padding in your bra.”
“There is no truth to the padding station. In all the years I worked on the show, that never existed,” Kara disputed to Fox News Digital.
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Another former “Deal or No Deal” model sided with Kara and expressed that she had not been “treated like a bimbo” at all.
“Instead of ever feeling like a bimbo, I knew… working alongside such wonderful people like Howie Mandel would only lead to bigger and better things for me,” Donna Feldman told Fox News Digital at the time.
Feldman continued to say it wasn’t just her “looks” that landed her the job, but her “positive nature,” personality and “overall work ethic.”
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“Of course, there are certain aspects, like having to stand in high heels for many hours… but that was part of the job that I signed up for… However, it’s important to note that everyone has their own experience, and I can only speak from mine,” Feldman added.