Highlights from Prince Harry’s interview with 60 Minutes

Prince Harry spoke on American television for the first time about his upcoming memoir, “Spare,” in a 60 Minutes interview with Anderson Cooper. These were some of the revelations from their chat.


Prince Harry describes how he found out about his mother’s death | 60 minutes

02:59

Harry was 12 when his mother, Princess Diana, was killed in a car accident in Paris. It was August 1997 and Harry was at Balmoral Castle in Scotland with other members of the royal family. In his book, Harry described the moment his father, Prince Charles, woke him up to tell him what had happened.

“In the book you’re writing,” he says, “They tried, dear boy. I’m afraid she didn’t make it.” Those sentences stick in my mind like arrows on a board, you say,” Cooper said. “Did you cry?”

“No. No. Never shed a single tear at that point,” Harry said. “I was in shock, you know? Twelve years old. Kind of—7, 7:30 in the morning, early. Your dad comes in, sits on your bed, puts his hand on your knee and tells you, ‘It’s been an accident.’ I couldn’t believe.”

“You write in the book,” Cooper said, “”Dad didn’t hug me. He was not good at showing emotions under normal circumstances. But his hand fell once more on my knee and he said, “It’s going to be okay.” But after that, nothing was good for a long time.'”

“No, nothing, nothing was alright,” Harry said.


Prince Harry refused to accept Diana’s death for years | 60 minutes

03:47

Harry writes in “Spare” about how he reacted in the days and years after the death of his mother, Princess Diana, in 1997. He told Cooper about how he did not believe Diana was dead.

“For a long time I just refused to accept that she was—she was gone,” Harry said. “Part of, you know, she would never do this to us, but also part of, maybe this is all part of a plan.”

“You really thought,” Cooper asked, “that maybe she had just decided to disappear for a while?”

“For a while, and then she’d call us and we’d go and join her, yes,” said Harry, who was 12 when his mother died.


Prince Harry says he has used psychedelics to help cope with grief | 60 minutes

01:20

Harry says he sought help from a therapist seven years ago and reveals he has also tried more experimental treatments to try to cope with the grief he still feels after his mother’s death.

“You write in the book about psychedelics,” Cooper said. “Ayahuasca, psilocybin, mushrooms. They were actually important to you.”

“I would never recommend people do this in their spare time,” Harry said. “But do it with the right people, if you’re suffering a tremendous amount of loss, grief or trauma, then these things have a way of working as medicine.”

“They showed you something,” Cooper asked. “What did they show you?”

“For me, they cleared the windshield, the windshield, the misery of loss,” Harry said. “They cleared away this idea that I had in my head that – that my mother – that I needed to cry to prove to my mother that I missed her. When in fact she wanted me to be happy.”


Prince Harry says family didn’t include him in travel plans until Queen Elizabeth died | 60 minutes

01:10

Prince Harry was in London last September for a charity event when the palace announced that Queen Elizabeth II was under medical supervision at Balmoral Castle in Scotland.

“I asked my brother — I said, “What are your plans? How do you and Kate get up there?” And then, a couple of hours later, you know, all the family members who live in the Windsor and Ascot area jumped on a plane together,” said Harry. “A plane with 12, 14, maybe 16 seats.”

“You weren’t invited on that flight?” Cooper asked.

“I wasn’t invited,” Harry said.

When Harry arrived at Balmoral on his own, the Queen was dead.


Prince Harry on his family’s reaction to his relationship with Meghan Markle | 60 minutes

02:55

Harry writes that when he introduced Meghan Markle to his family in 2016, her father initially liked her. But his brother, Prince William, was skeptical.

Others in the family, Harry told Cooper, were also troubled.

“Right from the beginning, before they even had a chance to get to know her,” Harry said. “And the British press jumped on it. And here we are.”


Prince Harry describes his feelings about Camilla, Queen Consort | 60 minutes

01:48

In his book, Prince Harry’s portrayal of his stepmother, Camilla, now Queen Consort, is perhaps the most critical. She married then-Prince Charles in 2005, although the two had been romantically involved on and off for decades. Princess Diana famously referred to Camilla as the “third person” in her marriage, and Prince Harry hasn’t forgotten.

She was portrayed by the tabloids as “the villain,” Harry told Cooper. “She was the third person in their marriage. She needed to rehabilitate her image.”

“You and your brother both directly asked your father not to marry Camilla?” Cooper asked.

“Yes,” Harry said. “We didn’t think it was necessary. We thought it would do more harm than good, and if he was now with his person, that—that’s sure enough. Why go that far when you don’t necessarily have to? We wanted that he should be happy. And we saw how happy he was with her. So at that time it was ‘OK.’


Prince Harry talks about his physical altercation with Prince William | 60 minutes

01:46

“There was a build up of frustration, I think, on his part. It was at a point where he was being told certain things by people in his office,” Harry said. “And at the same time he was consuming a lot of the tabloid press, a lot of the stories. And he had a few cases that weren’t based on reality. And I defended my wife. And he came after my wife. She wasn’t there at the time, but through the stuff he said. I defended myself. And we moved from one room to the kitchen. And his frustrations grew, and grew, and grew. He yelled at me. I yelled back at him. It wasn’t nice. It wasn’t nice at all taken. And he snapped. And he pushed me to the floor.”

“Did he knock you over?” Cooper asked.

“He knocked me over. I landed on the dog bowl,” Harry said. “I cut my back. I didn’t know about it at the time. But, yeah, he — he apologized afterward. It was a pretty nasty experience.”


Prince Harry says William told him to ‘pretend we don’t know each other’ at school | 60 minutes

02:01

Although Harry and William seemed inseparable to the outside world when they were growing up, the two have lived separate lives since their mother’s death.

“Even when you went to the same school, in high school,” Cooper told Harry, “your brother told you, ‘Pretend we don’t know each other’.”

“Yes, and at the time it hurt. I couldn’t understand it. I thought, “What do you mean? We’re in the same school now,” Harry said. “Like, ‘I haven’t seen you in ages, now we get to hang out.’ He’s like, ‘No, no, no, when we’re at school we don’t know each other. ‘ And I took it personally. But yeah, you’re absolutely right, you hit the nail on the head. Like, we had a very similar traumatic experience, and then – we dealt with it in two very different ways.”

60 Minutes contacted Buckingham Palace for comment. Palace representatives demanded that before they consider commenting, we give them our report before it airs, which 60 Minutes is not doing.

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