Netflix’s Harry & Meghan looks set to reopen old wounds about the controversial 1995 Panorama interview as the Duke of Sussex broke rank to say his mother was “speaking the truth of her experience” in the interview.
In episode one of the hotly-anticipated doc series, which came out this morning, Netflix uses footage of the now-disgraced interview secured by Martin Bashir for the BBC to illustrate Diana’s treatment by the media.
Harry states before the clip: “I think we all know she was deceived into giving the interview but at the same time she spoke the truth of her experience.”
Prince William has previously said the interview “holds no legitimacy and should never be aired again,” jarring with Harry’s remark in the Netflix series and the fact that Netflix aired the clip.
The clip shows Diana saying she was “terrified of being driven away by the media” and that she found the ‘press pack’ “incredibly daunting as I don’t like being the center of attention.” The interview became notorious for Diana’s “there were three of us in the marriage” quip, which referred to then-Prince Charles’ relationship with Camilla Parker-Bowles.
Bashir’s interview, which is the subject of an episode of The Crown season five, generated headlines last year when Diana’s brother Earl Spencer pushed the BBC to review how the now-disgraced correspondent was able to land the interview.
Bashir used fake bank notes in order to gain Spencer’s trust, according to an excoriating report from Lord Dyson that blasted the BBC’s “woeful incompetence” and led to the resignation of former Director General Tony Hall from his Chairman post with the National Gallery. Hall was Head of News at the time of the Diana interview and was partly blamed for the affair by Dyson.
Following the Dyson Report’s publication, the BBC donated almost £1.5M ($1.8M) to charities linked with Princess Diana from the commercial proceeds of the interview footage and pledged it would never air or license the interview again.