Meghan Markle and Harry: Expert discusses Oprah Winfrey interview
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have recorded an interview with the US TV legend due to be aired on March 7, in which “nothing is off limits”, according to Oprah’s friend Gayle King. This news emerged around the same time it was announced the couple were officially losing their royal patronages and military appointments. The couple are losing several beloved patronages as a result of the 12-month review, which was scheduled to see where they were a year after stepping down as senior royals, and to work out what would happen next.
The stripping of their patronages was announced by Buckingham Palace, but the couple quickly responded, insisting they will continue to support the organisations in an unofficial capacity.
They said they would continue to serve because “service is universal”.
Now, it has been claimed that the date of the Oprah interview date was brought forward after it became clear they would definitely be losing these patronages.
Meghan and Harry allegedly wanted to promote the narrative that this was happening “of their own volition” rather than the Queen unilaterally stripping them of the responsibilities.
READ MORE: Meghan and Harry’s Oprah interview dubbed ‘disaster waiting to happen’
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have done an interview with Oprah Winfrey to be aired on March 7
The Queen has stripped the Sussexes of their royal patronages
Pod Save the Queen is hosted by Ann Gripper and features Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers.
Mr Myers said: “It was described to me this week that someone had said the dates had been brought forward because they knew they were going to lose their patronages, because of the March 31 deadline coming up for the 12-month review of them leaving the Royal Family.
“And they wanted to put across the notion that they had made these decisions of their own volition, that they made it look like they were stepping down, rather than the Queen stripping them of their patronages, which has emerged this week actually.
“It does seem like a lot of tit for tat going on and I find it quite sad, it didn’t need to be like this.
Prince Harry has lost his beloved military appointments
“I just don’t understand why they are doing this Oprah interview if not for score-settling.”
He added that the 90-minute special would be an opportunity for them to “air their grievances”, be that with the Royal Family, the media or something else.
Ms Gripper argued that they could be using the time to promote their new Archewell Foundation and “add some flesh to the bone”, explaining what it is really about.
Mr Myers acknowledged that it may be all “sweetness and light” and that he could be “proved wrong”.
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However, he insisted that it is very much “their style” to air dirty laundry in broadcast interviews in this way.
In 2019, both Meghan and Harry gave fascinating interviews with ITV’s Tom Bradby during their Africa tour, in which they delved into their life in the Royal Family.
Both spoke about their relationship with the media and Harry gave an insight into his royal relationships by admitting the rift with his brother Prince William, saying they were “on different paths”.
Meanwhile, Meghan made the well-reported comment that “not many people” had asked whether she was OK, which was perceived to be a dig at other members of the Royal Family.
Meghan and Harry: Palace needed decision ‘before Oprah’ says expert
Mr Myers also posited that the interview was “a disaster waiting to happen”, comparing it to other landmark royal interviews.
Prince Andrew’s interview with BBC Newsnight in 2019 is widely viewed as a car crash, and ultimately led to him stepping back from royal duties.
Back in the Nineties, Prince Charles and Princess Diana both caused a storm when they each did a TV interview.
Diana, who famously said there were “three of us in this marriage” in her astonishing chat with BBC Panorama’s Martin Bashir, is said to have later regretted some of the things she said in that interview.
Ms Gripper argued that perhaps Oprah may “go easy” on Meghan, given the nature of her interviews.
While Emily Maitlis, an investigative journalist, was grilling Andrew on serious allegations, Oprah’s show is more about entertainment than holding people to account.
What’s more, Meghan and Oprah are known to be friendly, with the American star even attending the royal wedding in 2018.
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