Viewers in 64 countries are set to tune in to watch Meghan and Harry’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey after its US premiere on Sunday night.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex‘s two-hour pre-recorded sit-down interview will first be shown by CBS in the US at 1am UK time early Monday morning.
The Royals have been told to ‘hide behind their sofas’ when the interview is released – with Miss Winfrey promising ‘shocking’ revelations and ‘no subject off limits’ in one of several over-produced teaser trailers.
Deals have been struck across the globe for the rights to broadcast the Sussexes’ Oprah Winfrey interview, ViacomCBS Global Distribution Group said.
CBS Presents Oprah With Meghan And Harry has been licensed to be shown in 64 countries in total, including in the UK where ITV will broadcast the special on Monday night – despite criticism over its timing with Prince Philip remaining in hospital.
Other countries where it will be shown include Australia, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Iceland, Israel, Italy, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Switzerland.
Viewers in 64 countries are set to tune in to watch Meghan and Harry’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey (pictured) early next week
It will be screened on networks including Australia’s Network 10 and Canada’s Global TV. It will also be on RTE2 in Ireland, RTL in Germany and Croatia and Sky Italia-TV8 in Italy.
Furthermore, 50 countries in sub-Saharan Africa will broadcast the interview.
ITV has faced furious backlash at their decision to push ahead with broadcasting the interview while Harry’s 99-year-old grandfather Prince Philip recovers from heart surgery in hospital – where he is set to remain ‘for a number of days’.
The channel released a trailer at 4pm today ahead of the two-hour show next Monday, which featured the same footage put out by CBS in the early hours of this morning – but this time with ITV’s branding in the corner.
The video clip from Meghan and Harry’s interview – which was filmed last month in California – saw the Duchess say she could not be expected to stay silent if the royal family played a part in ‘perpetuating falsehoods’ about her and Prince Harry.
Ramping up her war of words with the royals, the Duchess of Sussex calls her husband’s family ‘The Firm’ in the 30-second trailer released by CBS today and blames them for speaking out.
The two-hour pre-recorded sit-down interview (pictured) will first be shown by CBS in the US at 1am UK time on Sunday night
In a clip set to dramatic music, Ms Winfrey asks her: ‘How do you feel about the Palace hearing you speak your truth today?’
An emotional Meghan replies: ‘I don’t know how they could 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’.
The Duchess adds: ‘And, if that comes with risk of losing things, there is a lot that has been lost already.’
It is not known what ‘falsehoods’ Meghan is talking about because the interview was recorded before she was accused of ‘driving out’ two PAs and shattering the confidence of another member of Kensington Palace staff – with one former aide branding Prince Harry and his wife ‘outrageous bullies’ in The Times earlier this week.
Lawyers for the Sussexes have vehemently denied the claims.
Meghan Markle spoke to Oprah Winfrey for the interview, which will air on Sunday, and is asked whether she had contemplated what the reaction would be from Buckingham Palace to the interview
CBS Presents Oprah With Meghan And Harry has been licensed to be shown in 64 countries in total, including in the UK where ITV will broadcast the special on Monday night – despite criticism over its timing with Prince Philip (pictured last year) remaining in hospital
Meanwhile Buckingham Palace said at 1pm today that a special Commonwealth programme would be aired just hours before the Meghan and Harry interview on the BBC.
The Queen and the Royal Family have turned their attention to the global impact of the coronavirus pandemic for the show which will be on BBC One in the UK and globally on the BBC’s YouTube channel from 5pm on Sunday.
Ahead of Harry and Meghan’s sit-down, the Queen, in an audio message, will pay tribute to the way in which communities across the ‘family of nations’ have ‘come together’ in response to the Covid-19 outbreak.
Buckingham Palace, which is bracing itself for dramatic revelations from the Sussexes on Sunday night, said the one-hour programme will also celebrate ‘Her Majesty’s lifetime commitment to the Commonwealth’. The Queen, who has reigned for nearly 70 years, is Head of the Commonwealth – a voluntary association of 54 nations.
Harry and Meghan were accused of being disrespectful to the monarch’s life of duty when their Megxit departure was finalised two weeks ago, with their camp saying: ‘We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.’
But the Sussexes’ relatives have joined forces to appear in the Commonwealth tribute this weekend.
The Prince of Wales recorded a message addressing ‘the universal devastation caused by the coronavirus pandemic’, and celebrating critical work to combat climate change. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have also taken part.
William and Kate will be seen speaking to medical, charity and voluntary staff from across the Commonwealth and hearing about how they have adapted their efforts in response to the pandemic. The Duchess of Cornwall has chatted to presenter Clare Balding about the importance of books and reading for children in the Commonwealth.
To mark Commonwealth Day and International Women’s Day, Sophie, Countess of Wessex has spoken to three women from the Commonwealth about their experiences of supporting other women and their communities.
The programme replaces the annual Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey – which was the scene of Harry and Meghan’s final official public engagement last year. The 2021 service was cancelled for the first time in nearly half a century, because of the pandemic.
ITV released a trailer at 4pm today ahead of the two-hour show next Monday, which featured the same footage released by CBS in the early hours of this morning – but this time with ITV’s branding in the corner (bottom right)
ITV published a video from the Harry and Meghan interview at 4pm today (left), three hours after Buckingham Palace issued a press release about the Commonwealth service on BBC One at 1pm (right)
Buckingham Palace today confirmed that the BBC would be showing a Commonwealth Day special on Sunday at 5pm
Harry and Meghan, who quit last year as senior working royals and moved to the US, were hailed as the new royal stars of the Commonwealth ahead of their wedding, having pledged themselves to a lifetime of work with the family of nations in their engagement interview.
But the couple were today accused of being disrespectful to the Queen and her husband after it emerged they won’t delay the release of their Oprah interview despite Philip’s health problems.
The couple are under huge pressure to ask Oprah to delay the broadcast in the US on Sunday night and across the world on Monday after it was revealed Prince Philip underwent heart surgery yesterday.
Critics including several MPs have warned them they are ‘badly advised’ to go along with the plan – but the couple insist that it is up to CBS, who don’t have ‘any intention’ to delay the show set to make them millions of dollars in sales and advertising revenue.
A source close to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex today confirmed that the screening on Sunday is still expected to go ahead, claiming the decision now lies with the broadcasters set to make millions from the two-hour show.
‘There are a lot of people who are going to talk about this until the programme airs, but the programming and all the rest of it is ultimately up to CBS, we’re not involved in that side of things’, the source said, adding: ‘As it stands, I don’t think there is any intention from the programme maker to change its air date’.
But there is growing anger over the broadcast, with royal experts, fans and politicians calling for a postponement. Conservative MP Bob Blackman told MailOnline today: ‘The reality is I don’t think the interview is appropriate at all.
‘The less they say the better, irrespective of the state of health of the Duke of Edinburgh. But to be doing a tell-all interview screened in the UK when he is in hospital – fortunately he appears to have had a successful operation – they are badly advised to put it mildly. None of these royal interviews have gone well… and I can’t see this going any better.’
Mr Blackman said ITV has ‘got a choice to make’. ‘I don’t think they should be showing it,’ he said. ‘Everyone’s sympathies should be for the Queen, a remarkable lady who has given a lifetime of service.’
Another Tory MP, who did not want to be named, said of Harry and Meghan: ‘One day I hope those two discover what it is really like to have problems.’