The Duke of Cambridge has finally spoke up about the infamous Princess Diana BBC Panorama interview that shocked the world.
In a statement released by Kensington Palace, Prince William said: “The independent investigation is a step in the right direction. It should help establish the truth behind the actions that led to the Panorama interview and subsequent decisions taken by those in the BBC at the time.”
Lord Dyson — the former president of the Court of Appeal of England — will lead the independent investigation, which will begin immediately. Dyson will look into how the corporation landed the scoop and what really happened between Diana and journalist Martin Bashir leading up to the interview.
The respected judge will interview several witnesses linked to the program and examine the journalist’s methods during the original BBC interview. Tim Davie, BBC’s director-general, stated: “The BBC is determined to get to the truth about these events and that is why we have commissioned an independent investigation. Lord Dyson is an eminent and highly respected figure who will lead a thorough process.”
Bashir, 57, cannot comment regarding the controversial matter, as he’s recovering from heart surgery and complications due to coronavirus.
Princess Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, previously accused BBC of “yellow journalism” — which emphasizes sensationalism and over-exaggeration that is based on little-to-no legitimate facts — and called for an independent inquiry earlier this month. The 56-year-old claimed the corporation convinced his sister that she was being bugged by MI5 and filled her head with lies about the royal family to get her to open up.
“The BBC have so far refused to acknowledge the above. They claim Diana wasn’t misled. They have ignored my inquiry as to whether the apology over their false bank statements extends to the ones that actually persuaded Diana to meet Bashir,” Earl told PEOPLE last month, noting Bashir also falsified bank documents to prove a conspiracy. The BBC responded that they have already apologized to the Earl.
During the interview — which aired 25 years ago in 1995 — Diana famously said: “Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.” One of the late princess’ friends, Rosa Monckton, noted the interview “probably changed the course of history” as it prompted the Prince and Princess of Wales’ divorce proceedings and possibly her untimely death.
“She believed Bashir’s outrageous claims — one of his skills, clearly, was in exploiting her susceptibility to the idea that she was being spied on by ‘enemies.’ He even commissioned forged documents to prove this,” Monckton said. “You have to remember that this was a woman who spent all her married life being chased by the paparazzi. Little wonder she was susceptible.” Diana’s pal also said she regretted doing the interview afterward because “of the damage it did to my boys [William and Prince Harry].”
Prince William’s statement comes amid the royal family’s outrage with Netflix’s The Crown. The new hit show historically follows the royal family and their interpersonal relationships throughout Queen Elizabeth II‘s ruling. Season four of The Crown focuses on Prince Charles‘ relationship with Princess Diana — who was only 20 when she wed the Prince of Wales — and his infamous affair with Camilla Parker Bowles.
According to multiple royal sources, the royal family is absolutely furious with the false representation of the family. An insider noted William is “not too pleased” with the depiction of his parents‘ relationship. According to the source, he believes “his parents are being exploited and presented in a false, simplistic way to make money.”
Charles’ pals shared their anger over his portrayal on the show and how the media company is exploiting the family for monetary gain. “In this case, it’s dragging up things that happened during very difficult times 25 or 30 years ago without a thought for anyone’s feelings,” the source said. “That isn’t right or fair, particularly when so many of the things being depicted don’t represent the truth.”
Despite backlash from the royals and their pals, Diana’s former royal butler and longtime friend deemed the latest series to be “the best yet.”
Actress Emma Corrin, who plays Princess Diana in season 4, shared her views about her role on the show. The 24-year-old said, “I understand why people would be upset because this is history. And even with Diana, it’s still very much fresh, everything that happens.”
She added: “So I do really understand if people would be upset.”
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