Prince Harry plugged his upcoming book on 60 Minutes.
Video screenshot by CNET

Prince Harry didn’t hold back in his 60 Minutes interview Sunday night about his memoir, Spare, which will be published Tuesday. He pretty much covered the topics that have been making headlines in the run-up to the book, including his mother’s death, his father’s remarriage, the British press and his current relationship with his father and brother.

How to watch Prince Harry’s interview

If you missed the 26-minute-long interview with Anderson Cooper and want an easy way to watch, 60 Minutes has released it on YouTube. It’s also available on Paramount Plus. The transcript of the interview is available on the 60 Minutes portion of the CBS News website.

Royal revelations

At least one copy of Harry’s memoir leaked in Europe, and British publications have already revealed parts of it. But hearing Prince Harry, the younger son of King Charles and the late Princess Diana, discuss it with Cooper, who is Gloria Vanderbilt’s son and knows a little something about famous mothers and families, put a fresh twist on some of the leaks.

Fight between brothers

Harry used the book to get in some digs at his brother, Prince William, including commenting on his “alarming baldness.” He told Cooper he didn’t see those remarks as cutting and said he loves his brother “deeply.” He also said William shunned him when they ended up at Eton together and told him, “Pretend we don’t know each other.” 

Harry discusses the fight where William knocked him down onto a dog bowl, which broke and cut Harry’s back. That fight has made headlines in many publications since the book leaks began. Harry said William later apologized and that Harry wasn’t hurt badly, but calls the fight a “pretty nasty experience.”

Diana’s death, and no hug from Charles

Harry was just 12 and William 15 when their mother was killed in that infamous 1997 car crash in Paris. He told Cooper that their father, Charles, woke him up to deliver the sad news.

This much was already known through many previous books about the royals. But in Spare, Harry reveals that his dad didn’t hug him when delivering the devastating news, instead putting his hand on Harry’s knee and telling him it would be OK. 

“But after that, nothing was OK for a long time,” Harry writes.

Dreaming Diana was alive

One of the most heart-wrenching parts of the interview was when Harry tells Cooper that for years, he thought perhaps his mother would somehow come back, that maybe she was hiding out and would return to her sons. 

When he was 20, he asked to see the shocking photos of her crash, though he didn’t look at the worst ones. And at 23, he asked his driver to take him at high speed through the tunnel where she died, thinking, “I need to take this journey. I need to ride the same route.”

Now, he said, he and William had considered asking for the case surrounding her death to be reopened, believing the whole story of how Diana died was never told. But he said, realistically, he doesn’t need to know all the answers.

Harry used drugs

Harry writes in the book that he used cocaine “a few times” when he was 17. He writes that using the drug “wasn’t much fun,” but it made him feel “different,” which was what he wanted at the time. 

Cooper cited the book as saying that Harry also used “psychedelics, Ayahuasca, psilocybin (and) mushrooms,” which he said helped him cope with his mother’s death. Harry told Cooper he “would never recommend people to do this recreationally,” but that “for me, they cleared the windscreen, the windshield, the misery of loss.”

Camilla and Charles

Camilla Parker-Bowles is now Charles’ wife and queen, but those who are still loyal to Diana think of her as the other woman in that marriage. Harry, apparently, is one of those, saying to Cooper that Camilla “was the villain.” 

He said he and William asked their father not to marry her, thinking Charles and Camilla could finally be open about their romance, and feeling that a marriage was unnecessary. Then, Harry goes on to suggest that Camilla traded information about him to the British press in exchange for better stories about her, writing in the book that she “sacrificed me on her personal P.R. altar.” 

Harry’s said many times before, including in his Oprah Winfrey interview back in 2021, that sources within the palace traded stories about him. But he’s never before pinned it quite so directly on one person, namely, Camilla.

Death of the queen

Harry was in London when his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, took a turn for the worse in September while she was at Balmoral Castle in Scotland. Harry said he asked William what his plans were, and then suddenly the family had left on a small plane to get to the queen, without including Harry. Harry arrived at Balmoral after she had died, although he did get to spend some time saying goodbye to her as her body lay in her bedroom.

“I was really happy for her,” Harry told Cooper. “Because she’d finished life. She’d completed life, and her husband was — was waiting for her.”

Current royal relationships

Harry told Cooper it’s been “a while” since he spoke to either his father or his brother. He hopes, he said, to one day have a relationship with them again, though Cooper points out they may very well expect anything they say privately to Harry, he will share publicly. To that, Harry essentially says that the other royals started things.

“This all started with them briefing, daily, against my wife with lies to the point of where my wife and I had to run away from our count– my country,” he said.

No palace response

60 Minutes representatives “reached out to Buckingham Palace for comment,” Cooper reported, but “Its representatives demanded that before considering responding, 60 Minutes provide them with our report prior to airing it tonight, which is something we never do.”

Watch the Prince Harry interview on Paramount Plus

See at Paramount Plus

Prince Harry’s book

You can preorder it in paper, e-book or audiobook form. The book is 416 pages long, and the audiobook is 15 hours and 39 minutes.

There’s no doubt this audiobook will be more popular and buzzy than those created for most memoirs, as Harry himself is reading the audio version. This isn’t completely unheard of. Harry’s father, King Charles, read one of his books as an audiobook back in 2010, though it was about the environment, not his personal life.

The book’s title comes from a famed phrase about how it was Diana’s job to produce “the heir and the spare.” Prince William, born in 1982, was the heir to the throne after his father, Charles. 

Harry, born in 1984, was considered the “spare,” meaning he would take the throne should something happen to his older brother. Now that William has three children, however, Harry has been pushed behind them in the line of succession, and is unlikely to ever sit on the British throne.

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