Harry’s ‘significant’ motive for interview
During their hours-long interview with Oprah last Monday, both Meghan Markle and Prince Harry gave ample reasons why they'd chosen to sit down and share their side of the story.
Raising awareness around mental health was one - after Meghan's devastating revelation that she dealt with suicidal ideation during her time as a senior royal - as was putting to rest the barrage of tabloid rumours she'd faced, including that she'd supposedly made sister-in-law Kate Middleton cry.
Asked by the talk show legend if she was afraid of backlash from the royal family for doing the interview, the Duchess of Sussex said she was "not going to live my life in fear".
"You know, I think so much if it is said with an understanding of just truth," she said.
"To answer your question, I don't know how they expect that after all of this time, we would still just be silent if there is an active role that The Firm is playing in perpetuating falsehoods about us.
"That at a certain point, you're going to go, 'But, you guys, someone just tell the truth.' And if that comes with risk of losing things, I mean, I've lost … there's a lot that's been lost already."
Now, sources have claimed to the Daily Mailthat there was another, "subtle but significant" motive behind the couple sitting down with Oprah: as part of Prince Harry's deal with Apple TV to plug his and Oprah's upcoming documentary on mental health.
During one segment of their chat, Oprah mentioned that, "Harry and I are working on this mental health series for Apple."
Both the Sussexes and Oprah made clear at the beginning of the interview that the couple weren't being paid for the CBS interview.
But an insider with "knowledge of the deal" claimed to the publication that promoting the documentary within the interview was part of Harry's agreement as "co-partner, co-creator and executive producer" of the as-yet untitled Apple series
The LA consultant, who works with Apple and Netflix, said that while Harry and Oprah's claims (about payment for the interview) are "technically true", his deal with the tech giant includes promotional work, which could have included their chat.
The documentary, weeks away from release, was a "paying gig" for Harry, who will helm the series with Oprah.
"Oprah and Harry mentioning their documentary in the CBS interview was a clear plug," the consultant said.
"It is a very subtle mention, but given Oprah and her company Harpo Productions had editorial control over the show content, the fact it stayed in there spoke volumes.
"Sure, Harry and Meghan did not get paid for the Oprah interview. But the brand endorsements and recognition was significant … subtle but significant."
Another TV public relations source with knowledge of the couple's TV and podcast deals claimed that Netflix and Spotify being mentioned by name in their interview was "obviously promotion".
"The interview was powerful, emotional and personal, but let's not forget they are in business now," they said. "Netflix and Spotify have paid them significant sums of money and those deals come with an expectation of promotion."
The upcoming series will put a spotlight on the social problems that arise from mental health, breaking down its stigma and shame on a global scale - a topic that both Harry and Meghan, as well as Prince William, have been outspoken about and worked to raise awareness of.
Speaking to her friend Gayle King on CBS This Morning, Oprah revealed the project came about after she pitched the idea to Harry during a discussion about global issues.
"I asked (Harry) the question, 'What do you think are the most important issues facing the world right now?' and he said there are two," she said.
"He said climate change and mental wellness, mental fitness and mental health.
"As you know, he's spoken about his own issues and what he went through after his mother died and how being able to talk about it has benefited him.
"So it's a passion of his and, at the end of the conversation, I said, 'Oh, I'm going to be doing this thing with Apple. It's a big concern of mine too and I want to try to erase the stigma', and he said at the end of the conversation, 'If there's anything I can do to help.'"
When the show was announced, Harry said in a statement he believes "that good mental health - mental fitness - is the key to powerful leadership, productive communities and a purpose-driven self".
"It is a huge responsibility to get this right as we bring you the facts, the science and the awareness of a subject that is so relevant during these times," he said.
"Our hope is that this series will be positive, enlightening and inclusive - sharing global stories of unparalleled human spirit fighting back from the darkest places, and the opportunity for us to understand ourselves and those around us better. I am incredibly proud to be working alongside Oprah on this vital series."
Originally published as Harry's 'significant' motive for interview