Prince William isn’t pleased with how he was portrayed by his brother, Prince Harry, during his explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey earlier this month, royal expert Katie Nicholl tells ET.
The 38-year-old Duke of Cambridge publicly refuted Harry’s claims of racism within the royal family, but Nicholl says that privately he’s also upset by some of Harry’s other statements.
“We’re hearing reports that Prince William felt quite affronted by the claims that Harry made in the interview, not only to the suggestion of racism within the royal family.. …We’ve also heard through friends of William who have spoken to the newspapers over here that he really rejects that suggestion from his brother that he feels ‘trapped’ by the firm, that he feels trapped by his future role,” Nicholl says. “If you speak to the sources close to William, they say this is very much not the case. He’s very willing to embrace his destiny as a future king, and he’s very happy to step up to his responsibilities.”
William is second in line to the British royal throne after his father, Prince Charles.
During the course of his tell-all interview with his wife, Meghan Markle, Harry expressed sympathy for his brother’s position after stepping down as a senior member of the royal family himself.
“My father and my brother, they are all trapped,” he said. “They don’t get to leave. And I have huge compassion for that.”
Following the interview, the royal family released an official statement, saying, “The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan. The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.”
Nicholl says that the public shouldn’t expect any further statements from the royal family in the wake of the interview.
“Clearly we’re quite a ways off from seeing any healing of this rift, but certainly my understanding from the Cambridge camp is that if everything is going to be scrutinized and dissected in the media, then there’s really no chance of them moving on from this,” Nicholl shares. “I think that you’re going to hear less and less about the current state of the relationship with the brothers for the simple reason that every time something is leaked to the media, it sets those peace talks back.”
This summer’s deadline of the Princess Diana statue unveiling in the gardens of Kensington Palace has put pressure on the brothers’ peace talks.
“It’s really important to the royal family, but I think particularly Prince William, that William and Harry are there shoulder by shoulder,” Nicholl says of the event coming up in July. “There is a lot of work, clearly, to be done for this relationship to repair. That building of trust is obviously very important.”
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