Prince William was ‘absolutely livid’ at Princess Diana for tell-all interview
Meghan Markle compared to Diana's Bashir interview by expert
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William’s brother Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle have just recorded an interview with Oprah Winfrey, which will be aired on Sunday in the US and Monday in the UK. The two-hour special is set to delve into the couple’s troubles over the past year with Buckingham Palace and the press. In a clip ahead of its broadcast, Meghan accused the Palace of “perpetuating falsehoods” about them.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex did not tell the Royal Family about their plans for the interview, in which “nothing is off limits”, and senior royals are likely to be very nervous about what they will say.
Harry and William were very close when they were young, but a rift has grown between them in recent years and, if the Duke of Cambridge’s reaction to Diana’s interview is anything to go by, this televised chat will not help.
William was said to be “furious” about Diana’s interview and the pair had a big row at Kensington Palace regarding it.
In the interview, Diana had opened up about her life inside Palace walls, acknowledging her husband’s infidelity ‒ famously saying “there were three of us in this marriage” ‒ and her own struggles with bulimia and depression, as well as an alleged lack of support from other royals.
William, who was 13 at the time it was broadcast, fell out with his mother over it and gave her the silent treatment for several weeks after.
Diana’s friend Simone Simmons said: “William was absolutely livid. Of course it was all in the papers and William told me he was teased at school because of it.
“He felt really bad for his mum because of what she had gone through, but he was furious with her.
“People at school were calling her all sorts of names.
“The weekend after it went out they had a big row at Kensington Palace.
“William was furious and Diana was distraught. I was there the day after she spoke to him and Diana was in a terrible state.”
It was William’s dismayed reaction that contributed towards Diana regretting her interview altogether.
Veteran royal correspondent Robert Jobson described in his book ‘William’s Princess’ how Diana dropped by Eton the day before the programme was aired to warn him.
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When it was broadcast, he was called down to watch it in his house master’s study, while Harry declined the offer to watch it.
William was reportedly shocked at how far Diana went in airing the Royal Family’s dirty laundry.
Mr Robson said: “Diana had paid a surprise visit to Eton the day before the programme was broadcast.
“She wanted to tell him about it before it was screened and, too late to stop it, she was beginning to regret her decision.
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“The next day William was called down to his house master’s study shortly before 8pm, where he watched his mother’s interview in solitude.
“Harry had turned down the chance to join him.
“William watched in dismay as Diana went further than anybody had imagined she would.”
Diana’s private secretary Patrick Jephson later said she “deeply regretted” her decision, in particular the way she framed herself as “a victim”.
He said: “I think the scales fell from her eyes and suddenly what had been a rather subversive or daring scheme ‒ or however [the BBC] had dressed it up for her ‒ it suddenly in the cold light of day didn’t look like such a good idea.”
‘William’s Princess’ was written by Robert Jobson and published by John Blake Publishing Ltd in 2006. It is available here.
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