It will be a showdown on March 7 when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Oprah interview will air on CBS — the same day Queen Elizabeth II will appear on the small screen to talk about Commonwealth Day. However, the 94-year-old wants everything to go smoothly on her end.
“The Palace is hoping the service will get plenty of media coverage because Commonwealth Day is incredibly important to the Queen, she won’t be happy if anything overshadows it,” a source told Vanity Fair.
According to a Westminster Abbey spokesperson, “the decision was taken jointly by the Abbey, the BBC and the royal household about three weeks ago.”
Since there's a time difference, people will be able to tune into the interview and the Queen’s announcement, but “the scheduling conflict will be frustrating for Palace aides who go to great lengths to avoid diary clashes and are already bracing themselves for what could be the Royal Family’s most explosive interview since Diana agreed to talk with Panorama,” royal expert Katie Nicholl said.
Commonwealth Day is one of the most important events to the Queen, so people were confused as to why Harry, 36, didn’t seem to be aware of the holiday.
“If Harry and #Meghan cared about the Commonwealth, why did they agree to this date for their big #Oprah interview?” the Daily Mail’s editor Richard Eden questioned on Twitter. “Seems like a calculated snub to me. #royal.”
Other social media users also were disappointed that Harry and Meghan didn’t seem to care about the controversy.
One person wrote, “Very disrespectful to show the interview commonwealth weekend. I wouldn't be surprised if it was on purpose considering the way she tries to upstage other RF members,” while another echoed, “No, it's not important to M but it has been part of Harry's life since he was a child. He has always gone to the Commonwealth Service with rest of the RF and during the week leading up to it, met heads of state. He knows how important this is to the Queen.”
However, some defended the couple — who recently exited the royal family for good — and said “it wasn’t their choice” as to when the interview will air.
Winfrey “will speak with Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex, in a wide-ranging interview, covering everything from stepping into life as a Royal, marriage, motherhood, philanthropic work to how she is handling life under intense public pressure,” CBS said in a statement.
Now that the pair is living on their own, it seems like they are ready to be honest about how they have been doing since stepping back from the royal family.
"There is a lot of tension between them and the royal family," a source admitted. "The interview is going to shine a light on what they have been through. Meghan and Harry are relieved they are away from it all."