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Video: TODAY relives royal wedding on Halloween

By
TODAY contributor
updated 10/31/2011 8:24:50 AM ET 2011-10-31T12:24:50

Traditional Halloween orange turned a royal hue on the Plaza Monday when the TODAY crew staged a major Trick or Treat Day spectacle in recreating the pomp of Will and Kate's royal wedding.

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Video: TODAY relives royal wedding on Halloween (on this page)

One of the show’s most ambitious undertakings — planning began not long after Prince William and the new Duchess of Cambridge tied in the knot in April — saw co-hosts Matt Lauer and Ann Curry play the regal bride and groom. And Curry found it was easier to slip into Kate’s dress than copy her royal mannerisms.

Vote: Which TODAY anchor's Halloween costume was the best?

"The royal wave is like this?” Curry said in rehearsals. “I don’t know how to do it, so I’m going to go “hey guys!’"

The Queen returns! Meredith shows up as surprise Halloween guest

Rounding out the royal wedding group was Al Roker portraying party-hearty royal brother Prince Harry, Natalie Morales as the Kate’s vivacious sister Pippa, and Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb playing Beatrice and Eugenie, royal daughters of Prince Andrew and Fergie.

Check out images of our anchors' Halloween costumes

TODAY’s relative newcomer Savannah Guthrie might be excused for thinking she received the short end of the stick in being tapped to play royal dad Prince Charles. First seeing herself in full Charles regalia, she shouted, “Oh my gosh, that’s hilarious!” and added, “This is probably a career-ender.”

TODAY
From left, Savannah as Prince Charles, Ann and Matt as Kate and Will and Al as Prince Harry.

TODAY alum Meredith Vieira, who wowed the Plaza crowd last Halloween as Lady Gaga, returned to join in on the Halloween festivities, eliciting screams from the TODAY personalities as she arrived as the Queen herself.

Video: Behind the scenes of TODAY’s Halloween spectacular (on this page)

Re-making the royal wedding wasn't an easy undertaking. Lauer and Roker were outfitted as the Princes from costume shops, and Curry and Morales' dresses were off-the-rack, but Gifford and Kotb’s costumes were designed from scratch to recreate the colorful attire of the young princesses.

Slideshow: TODAY's royal Halloween 2011 (on this page)
TODAY
As Matt tries to dip Meredith (as the queen), he causes a wardrobe malfunction.

And fittingly for a hair-raising holiday, getting the 'do’s of the royal family just right was the most painstaking endeavor. Each wig worn by the TODAY gang took up to 40 hours to make, using a half-pound each of hair.

Slideshow: Will and Kate's royal wedding (on this page)

The big reveal occurred at 8:12 a.m. as the throng gathered in the Plaza, many dressed in their own Halloween costumes and waving Union Jack flags, hailed the arrivals of the royal family.

TODAY producer Cecilia Fang said the production was perfectly fitting for the show. “We’ve done weddings on the plaza, we’ve done Halloween on the plaza, and now we’re doing both at once,” she said.

As pretend princes Lauer and Roker stood at attention, Curry’s Kate made her grand entrance — and immediately showed that indeed, she hadn’t quite perfected her royal wave. Still, Curry was a Kate-like vision in a lookalike gown, and as she slowly approached her intended she said, “Can we still change our minds?”

Slideshow: TODAY’s Halloween spooktacular (on this page)

Just as Lauer expressed regret that the Queen couldn’t make it to the ceremony, a Rolls Royce pulled up and out came Vieira, dressed in a copy of the royal matriarch's yellow frock. Joining the royal wedding party, Vieira received a decidedly ungrandmotherly hug from Lauer, who knocked her wig and hat off in the process.

Vieira, speaking in a broad royal accent, expressed surprise at her new look: “Look at my boobs! They’re so royal! I can’t see my feet!”

And Lauer couldn’t help poking fun at his brother for the morning, suggesting he might not make the perfect Prince Harry. “You know what I can’t get over? Al, you look like Elton John!,” he said.

Later, standing on a faux royal balcony, the TODAY family egged on Lauer and Curry to recreate the first royal kiss. “Let’s show as much emotion as they showed on that day,” said Lauer as he pursed his lips for a quick peck. Curry grabbed his head for a smooch with a bit more gusto.

All the while, Gifford and Kotb, dressed as Beatrice and Eugenie respectively, made for royal pests, circling the royal family and dancing on the balcony.

TODAY
Kathie Lee and Hoda ham it up as Beatrice and Eugenie.

“Mummy sends her love!” Gifford shouted to the couple (Sarah Ferguson, famously, wasn't invited to the real wedding).

As Lauer and Curry drove off in a car trailed with balloons, TODAY’s fourth hour correspondent Sarah Haines, dressed as a notably pregnant wedding invitee Victoria Beckham, introduced the behind-the-scenes of the hundreds of hours put into the royal Halloween production.

Kids reveal the true meaning of Halloween

Cameras captured Kotb in a bit of a diva moment when having her head fitted for her royal wig. “Please take this off, I hate it!” she bellowed. Guthrie proved to be more of a sport, despite being the only member of TODAY that had to gender-bend.

“Goodbye pride, goodbye dignity,” she muttered.

Slideshow: TODAY’s ‘Star Wars’ Halloween (on this page)

TODAY’s royal wedding re-make followed a long tradition of major Halloween productions for the show. Last year, the team dressed as pop culture icons, with Curry portraying Amelia Earhart, Roker as Superman and Morales as Justin Bieber.

In 2009, the crew raided the props department of Lucasfilm to stage a Star Wars extravaganza, and in 2008 the TODAY gang dressed as bedtime story figures.

© 2013 NBCNews.com  Reprints

Photos: Ceremony

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  1. Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, walk hand in hand from Buckingham Palace the day after their wedding to a waiting helicopter. (John Stillwell / PA / Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. The wedding bouquet of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, lies on the grave of the unknown warrior in Westminster Abbey on April 30, 2011 in London, England. (Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge pose for an official photo with (left to right): Miss Grace van Cutsem, Miss Eliza Lopes, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, HM The Queen, The Hon. Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Lady Louise Windsor, Master William Lowther-Pinkerton.

    Back Row (left to right): Master Tom Pettifer, HRH Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, HRH Prince Harry of Wales, Mr. Michael Middleton, Mrs. Michael Middleton, Mr. James Middleton, Miss Philippa Middleton, in the throne room at Buckingham Palace. (Handout / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Prince William and his wife Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, pose for a photograph with (clockwise from bottom right): Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Eliza Lopes, Grace van Cutsem, Lady Louise Windsor, Tom Pettifer, and William Lowther-Pinkerton in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace, following their wedding at Westminster Abbey. (Hugo Burnand / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. The royal couple poses in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace on April 29, 2011 in London. (Hugo Burnand / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Prince William and Princess Catherine take a spin outside Buckingham Palace in a convertible following their marriage. (Matt Dunham / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Members of the public gather along the Mall and around the Queen Victoria Memorial as they await Prince William and his wife Catherine's appearance. (Oli Scarff / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Prince William, who has been given the title of The Duke of Cambridge, greets Australia's Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her husband Tim Mathieson at Buckingham Palace in London after his wedding. (Ian West / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Prince William and his wife Catherine exit the 1902 State Landau carriage as they arrive at Buckingham Palace after their wedding in Westminster Abbey. (Andrew Winning / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Prince Charles makes the journey by carriage procession to Buckingham Palace following his son's wedding at Westminster Abbey. (Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Prince William and Princess Catherine approach Buckingham Palace by carriage procession following their marriage at Westminster Abbey. (Oli Scarff / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Rachel Jane Eardley and Diane Pallett put the finishing touches to the royal wedding cake, that Fiona Cairns and her team created for Prince William and Princess Catherine, in the Picture Gallery of Buckingham Palace. (John Stillwell / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Their Royal Highnesses Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge kiss on the balcony at Buckingham Palace. Thousands gathered outside the palace gates to witness the couples first public kiss as husband and wife. (Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Prince William and his wife Catherine, now known as the duchess of Cambridge, wave from their open-topped carriage as they leave Westminster Abbey after their wedding ceremony. (Alastair Grant / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Prince William, duke of Cambridge, and Catherine, duchess of Cambridge, ride along The Mall to Buckingham Palace following their marriage ceremony at Westminster Abbey. (Christopher Furlong / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Best man Prince Harry rides with two of the bridesmaids and a page boy in an Ascot Landau carriage along the processional route to Buckingham Palace after his brother's wedding ceremony. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Prince William and Catherine greet the thousands of people gathered along the processional route as they make their way in the 1902 State Landau carriage to Buckingham Palace. (Damien Meyer / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Prince William and his new wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge emerge from Westminster Abbey after their wedding ceremony. (Lewis Whyld / Pa / Pool / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Prince William's father Prince Charles stands with Kate's parents, Michael and Carole Middleton, after the wedding ceremony of their children. (Toby Melville / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Queen Elizabeth and her husband Prince Phillip travel in a closed-top carriage along the processional route from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. An aerial view of Westminster Abbey as bride Kate Middleton arrives on the hand of her father Michael Middleton. She was trailed by her sister and maid of honor, Pippa Middleton, as well as her bridesmaids and page boys. (Wpa Pool / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Prince William puts the ring on the finger of his bride Catherine Middleton in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams. The ring was made from a nugget of Welsh gold. (Andrew Milligan / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Guests at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton join the couple in singing hymns. (Wpa Pool / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Catherine Middleton, holding the hand of her father Michael, gives her groom Prince William a big smile while joining him at the altar at the start of their wedding ceremony. (Pool / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. Kate Middleton walks to the alter with her father Michael. (Pool / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. Bride Kate Middleton walks down the aisle with her father Michael at Westminster Abbey, followed by her sister Philippa and other bridemaids. (Andrew Milligan / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  27. Page-boy Tom Pettifer laughs as he arrives at Westminster Abbey with William Lowther-Pinkerton, and bridesmaids Lady Louise Windsor and Margarita Armstrong-Jones for the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton. (Dan Kitwood / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  28. Kate Middleton arrives with her sister Philippa Middleton at the West Door of Westminster Abbey in London for her wedding to Britain's Prince William. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  29. Kate Middleton waves as she rides next to her father Michael in a Rolls Royce on their way to Westminster Abbey for her marriage to Britain's Prince William. (Tony Gentile / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  30. Maid of honor Philippa Middleton arrives at Westminster Abbey for the wedding of her sister to Prince William. (Carl De Souza / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  31. Britain's Prince William waves as he arrives with his brother Prince Harry at the West Door of Westminster Abbey for his wedding, in London on Friday. (Odd Anderson / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  32. Princess Eugenie of York and Princess Beatrice of York arrive at Westminster Abbey to attend the royal wedding of Prince William to Catherine Middleton. (Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  33. Britain's Queen Elizabeth II shakes hands with the Dean of Westminster as she arrives at the West Door of Westminster Abbey. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  34. Carole Middleton, the mother of Kate Middleton, arrives at the West Door of Westminster Abbey for the wedding of her daughter to Britain's Prince William. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  35. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, arrives at Westminster Abbey. (Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  36. Anne, the Princess Royal, arrives at the West Door of Westminster Abbey. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  37. Prince William marries Kate Middleton in the wedding watched by millions around the world (Pool / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  38. David and Victoria Beckham arrive at Westminster Abbey to attend the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. Beckham served as a soccer ambassador with Prince William in Britain's failed bid to host the 2018 World Cup. (Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  39. Britain's Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and his wife Miriam arrive at Westminster Abbey for the royal wedding. (Alastair Grant / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  40. Sir Elton John and his partner David Furnish are directed to their seats in Westminster Abbey. (Dominic Lipinska / PA Pool via EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  41. Military bands play in London's Parliament Square ahead of the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. (John Giles / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  42. A marching band of guardsmen parades along The Mall before the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. (Dylan Martinez / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  43. Guests arrive at Westminster Abbey in the hours before the wedding of Britain's Prince William and Kate Middleton. (Phil Noble / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  44. The Right Reverend Dr. John Hall, Dean of Westminster holds the wedding program, titled the Order of Service, before the wedding of Prince William to Catherine Middleton at Westminster Abbey. (Dan Kitwood / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Image: Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, walk together in Buckingham Palace in central London
    John Stillwell / PA / Pool via Getty Images
    Above: Slideshow (44) Will and Kate's royal wedding - Ceremony
  2. Image: Royal Wedding - The Newlyweds Greet Wellwishers From The Buckingham Palace Balcony
    Oli Scarff / Getty Images
    Slideshow (31) Will and Kate's royal wedding - Royal fans
  3. Image: Ex-pats In Kabul Watch Royal Wedding
    Paula Bronstein / Getty Images
    Slideshow (18) Will and Kate's royal wedding - World reaction
  4. Image: Police officers walk down The Mall before the wedding of Britain's Prince William and Kate Middleton in central London
    Dylan Martinez / Reuters
    Slideshow (9) Will and Kate's royal wedding - Security
  5. Image:
    John Makely / TODAYshow.com
    Slideshow (16) Fairy-tale Halloween
  6. Image: 2009 Halloween Episode of NBC's "Today"
    Andy Kropa / Getty Images
    Slideshow (18) TODAY’s ‘Star Wars’ Halloween
  1. TODAY hosts, along with Tina Fey and Will Ferrell display their costumes at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York
    Jonathan D. Woods / TODAYShow.com
    Slideshow (22) TODAY’s Halloween spooktacular
  2. TODAY
    Slideshow (14) TODAY's royal Halloween 2011

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