Britain's Prince Harry
A series of TV interviews with Prince Harry will start airing on Sunday with the prospect of yet more damaging attacks on the monarchy. Image Credit: AFP

London: Prince Harry was set to discuss his memoirs in highly anticipated television interviews on Sunday after the controversy caused by details of the book's explosive revelations about royal rifts, allegation and drugs.

The 38-year-old prince's ghost-written book "Spare" was widely leaked after it mistakenly went on sale in Spain ahead of the official publication date Tuesday.

Details include an allegation his brother Prince William, the heir to the throne, attacked him during a row about his wife Meghan; an admission of drug use and also discloses more intimate private instances of family disharmony.

They have prompted both condemnation and derision, though the palace has not reacted.


All the channels have already released clips where Harry speaks about his fractious relationship with William and accuses his family of planting negative stories about him and Meghan in the media.

Britain's ITV television was set to air its 95-minute show "Harry: The Interview" at 9:00 pm (2100 GMT) Sunday.

In clips released by ITV, Harry said William lashed out at him as they rowed over Meghan and "I saw this red mist in him".

"He wanted me to hit him back, but I chose not to," Harry told the channel.

"I want reconciliation, but first there has to be accountability."

No point in 'staying silent'

On Sunday, Harry's public thoughts will keep coming, with three more TV interviews due to air. They had been timed for broadcast ahead of the official launch of Harry's book on Tuesday, and excerpts released ahead of time have shown Harry saying he wanted to give his side of the story.

"I don't know how staying silent is ever going to make things better," Harry says in his interview with Britain's ITV, which will be the first to be shown.

Polls suggest many Britons are becoming bored of the whole royal melodrama, and further revelations are unlikely to shake their views, whether sympathy for Harry and Meghan, or for those they criticise. However Harry's book was No. 1 on Amazon UK's bestselling books list on Saturday, available for pre-order ahead of its release.

Royal commentator Emily Andrews said that given Britain's current cost of living crisis, there could be limited support for the complaints of a privileged prince residing in a mansion in California.

"They are polarising, Harry and Megan, and I think that this new book by Harry probably won't change many people's opinions," Andrews told Reuters.

"I think this is overkill, it becomes saturation point and people think 'I don't want to hear anymore: shut up, go away'."

Britain's Prince Harry's book "Spare" is seen in a bookstore, before its official release date, in Barcelona, Spain January 5, 2023 Image Credit: Reuters

'Arch-nemesis' William

ITV interviewer Tom Bradby asked Harry whether his brother's reaction to the book might be: "How could you do this to me... after everything we went through?"

Harry responded tersely that William would "probably say all sorts of different things".

The former British Army captain added that he still believes in the monarchy, although he does not know if he will play any part in its future.

Asked why he was invading his own family's privacy, Harry said: "That would be the accusation from the people who don't understand or don't want to believe that my family have been briefing the press."

US channel CBS was later to broadcast its interview on its "60 Minutes" show at 7.30 pm Eastern Standard Time (0030 GMT, Monday).

Another US network, ABC, was to air its interview Monday.

Harry referred to William as his "beloved brother and arch-nemesis", ABC presenter Michael Strahan said in an interview excerpt.

"There has always been this competition between us, weirdly," Harry told the US channel.

"I think it really plays into or is played by the 'heir/spare'."

Backlash from media

The interviews were recorded before Harry's book was widely leaked Thursday, prompting a backlash from media, royal commentators, military veterans and even the Taliban.

The Times, citing a US publishing source, reported that Harry had wanted to pull the book from publication after attending the queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations last summer.

While "visiting his grandmother he had second thoughts", the source said, suggesting he was told during his visit that "there would be no way back" if the book came out.

"Obviously that all changed with the monarch's death in September," the source added.