Prince William + Prince Harry: The BBC Documentary’s Most Shocking Revelations


The latest BBC documentary “The Princes and the Press” sheds light on Prince William and Prince Harry’s relationship with the British media. The focus is not on the dispute between the brothers – but on the unscrupulous methods of the press and how they tactically and knowingly turned two brothers into opponents.

Prince William, 39, and Prince Harry, 37, will never be able to face the press with an open mind. The early death of her mother Princess Diana, † 36, makes a harmonious relationship with a journalist: inside she is almost impossible. And so it is not surprising that the new BBC documentary “The Princes and the Press” begins with precisely this aspect. But the direction of the film – no matter how clear it may seem at first glance – changes drastically in the course of the documentary.

Instead of looking at the disputes between the two brothers, which are said to have existed since Harry’s wedding to Duchess Meghan, 40, the makers of the documentary seek the blame for the broken relationship elsewhere: in the construction of the monarchy itself. Three revelations in the film are particularly shocking.

1. Prince William and Prince Harry were forced to “play with the media”

What exactly led to the breakup between Prince William and Prince Harry? It is this question that seems to hover over “The Princes and the Press”. Another question would be far more appropriate: Did William and Harry ever have the chance of an equal, brotherly relationship in public? The answer is as simple as it is brutal: no. The reason? “Playing with the media”, as the moderator of the film Amol Rajan describes it, only works with a hero and a villain.

Duchess Catherine, Prince William and Prince Harry

Amanda Platell, columnist for the Daily Mail, explains in the documentary that William and Harry were used specifically for this game by their own family. As the new faces of the next generation, they should cover up the dramas of the past. But the monarchy did the math without Prince Harry: “One prince has decided to play with the British media. The other is trying to change the rules …”, says Rajan.

2. BBC portrays Prince William as disloyal, jealous, and calculating

The relationship between the royal family and the press becomes more transparent and at the same time more absurd from minute to minute during the documentary. “It is a battle between two powerful forces,” the participating reporters try to paraphrase. A key statement is the one that really gets to the point: “The extent of the manipulation between the royal court and the media is far greater than the public would ever believe.”

It is a take and give. But if you don’t want to give – like Prince Harry – you obviously have to live with the consequences: bad publicity. But what is irritating: In the documentary, the journalists focus on a different figure than villains. It was Prince William who, as the future king, had to preserve his reputation. He grew up knowing that his reign was dependent on the goodwill of the press. Prince William was, especially after Harry’s wedding and the “Meghan Mania” in Great Britain, only out to protect his own reputation – and to put it above his brother. The tone of the documentation: The press tactically played the brothers off against each other. If either got good coverage, the other was exposed – and vice versa. William is said to have swallowed this bait without hesitation.

3. Investigative reporter speaks for the first time about the illegal practices of the press

In addition to saying that the monarchy and Prince William knowingly sacrificed Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan in order not to ruin their own relationship with the media, it is Garvin Burrows who makes arguably the most interesting revelations in the documentary. The private detective has never spoken about his work for the British media before. In an interview with moderator Rajan, Burrows reveals how obsessed the press was with the latest information from the two princes. Prince Harry would have always been the actual dream object. “Prince William on the front page doesn’t sell as many copies as Prince Harry. Harry quickly became the new Princess Diana,” said Burrows.

The people in charge did not care which methods were used to obtain intimate information. Burrows hacked the cell phone of Harry’s then girlfriend Chelsy Davy several times and was able to listen to voice messages in her mailbox. The phone of Duchess Catherine, 39, was also tapped – there were a total of 155 hacking attacks on Kate’s cell phone alone.

British media consider “The Princes and the Press” documentary unspectacular

It is no wonder that the British press are rather bored with the BBC documentary. After all, the short film of around 60 minutes does not contain any new revelations that go into the relationship between the two brothers. No, the really shocking remarks concern the press itself and portray it as a machine of intrigue, observation and deliberate manipulation.

Real revelations that would explain why Prince William and Prince Harry ultimately have such a bad relationship with each other do not appear in the documentary. No insiders, no new quotes, no anonymous sources from the palace. And yet the film seems to ask the real question, “What exactly led to the rift between Prince William and Prince Harry?” to answer … it was playing with the media.

Verwendete Quellen: “The Princes and the Press” BBC Two Documentary,


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