Prince William & Harry talk about their mother in the new BBC doc ‘Diana’


This summer will be the 20th anniversary of Princess Diana’s death in Paris. I can’t believe it’s been 20 years, I really can’t. My mother was obsessed with her and I still remember calling my mom that morning. While I’ll criticize Prince William for being a work-shy wanker who fetishizes his ridiculous idea of “normalcy,” I won’t criticize him for missing his mother, or for going out of his way to mark this 20th anniversary. I do feel like after 20 years, William is finally at a place where he can really talk about the guilt he feels – survivor’s guilt, from the sound of it – and how he’s struggled with the competing narratives about his mother after her death. All of this will be explored in a new BBC documentary called Diana. The doc has been done with William and Harry’s authorization, and some quotes from their interviews have come out this week:

Nearly 20 years after the death of their mother Princess Diana, Prince William and Harry are opening up about the days surrounding her death in a new BBC documentary, aptly titled Diana.

“Part of the reason why Harry and I want to do this is because we feel we owe it to her,” William, 34, says in the 90-minute film. “I think an element of it is feeling like we let her down when we were younger. We couldn’t protect her.”

William and Harry, 32, were just 15 and 12 when their mother died in a car crash in Paris. She was 36. Now, the men say they feel that they “owe” it to their mother to “stand up for her name and remind everybody of the character and person that she was.”

“I think it’s never going to be easy for the two of us to talk about our mother, but 20 years on seems like a good time to remind people of the difference that she made not just to the royal family but also to the world,” Harry says in the new documentary, according to the BBC.

Along with the princes, the program will include interviews with friends of Diana, politicians and journalists, all speaking about the days between her death and her funeral. In the upcoming film, Harry recalls the days following his mother’s death, noting that it was “shocking” to see the outpouring of emotion and support as a result of the tragedy.

“It was beautiful at the same time, and it was amazing. Now, looking back at it, it was amazing that our mother had such a huge effect on so many people,” he says. “When you’re that young and something like that happens to you, I think it’s lodged in here, there, wherever — in your heart, in your head and it stays there for a very, very long time.”

[From People]

On one side, I’m sure William and Harry will be accused of invoking their mother as their go-to for some sympathetic press. On the other side, for goodness sake! They miss their mother. They’re still processing everything, even 20 years later. And if they didn’t agree to this documentary, the conversation would have still taken place and the anniversary still would have been marked in a million different ways. But now they get to control the narrative a little bit.



Photos courtesy of WENN.

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56 Responses to “Prince William & Harry talk about their mother in the new BBC doc ‘Diana’”

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  1. Megan says:

    My husband’s father died 33 years ago and he is still processing it. Grief is a journey that never reaches a destination.

    • Tulip Garden says:


    • FLORC says:

      My father passed suddenly when I was 12. A few months after Diana. So, there are some parallels for me and no. The pain might not ever go away. I think goop explained it well speaking about the loss of her father.
      Something to the likes of the pain never lessens. It just bits you less often.

      You feel the void. You think of them in some way every single day. It’s a thought that never goes away.

      Best way I can explain it.. at that age losing a parent so suddenly. It feels like a support beam was kicked out and everything crumbles. Your heart and lungs pulled from your body and left with that feeling you’re suddenly incomplete.

      Yea I’ll give William crap for invoking his mother’s memory as a get out of jail free card, but this is different. It’s not to avoid scandal photos. It’s cathartic.

  2. Lillian says:

    I don’t think there is a right way to grieve so I just wish them best. To lose a mother when they were so young and in public must have been devastating

  3. Becks says:

    I imagine its also hard for William considering he will turn 36 next year. There has to be something weird about reaching the age your mother was when she died, considering how young she was.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      I was young when my mom died, too, and that’s exactly what I experienced when I reached the age my mom was when she died, unexpectedly during a surgery at age 49. That next birthday, when I turned 49 was weird, but when I turned 50, and I was older than she would ever be, it felt really surreal.

      For me, it’ll be 35 yrs. this September since she died, and not a day goes by that I don’t think of her, miss her… it never goes away.

      • Lady D says:

        My mom died 2 weeks before her 23rd. I’ve lived more than twice as long as my mother did, and it does seem weird. Sad too, to think how much she’s missed. She would have loved her grandchildren…

    • cee says:

      This happened to my mum. She woke up on her 45th birthday crying, knowing she was the same age her mother was when she unexpectedly passed away.

    • Kaz says:

      It hit me really hard when I turned 32 – the age my mother died. I think that’s when I really realised how tragically short her life was. I had a young baby and couldn’t stop thinking about my mother not seeing her children grow up and what if it happened to me? My brother – who never spoke of our mother – recently told me he spent his 32nd year getting really fit and spending every moment he could with his 2 girls. And now at 55 I still feel a sense of loss that my children and I didn’t have her around and know her.

  4. COSquared says:

    What is annoying is the “but DIANA!!” excuse in response to any sort of criticism. Light schedule critique? DIANA!! Large shopping bill critique? DIANA!! Let her soul rest in peace.

    • Royalsparkle says:


      More so to whiny bill – he has the same platform to sincerely -cinsistently honour his mum work embracing the people, charties duties and as she lived with less selfish granduer and entitlement – but all he seem to do is use her death to invoke PR sympathy excuses for not giving back to the people/Monarchy and POW.

  5. Anitas says:

    I remember the funeral. I watched it for a few minutes, then I had to turn it off. It felt horribly intrusive watching them escort their mother’s coffin, these boys who were about the same age as me, still children. Not only did they have to deal with losing her, but the whole world could watch their grief. What a terrible burden to bear.

  6. homeslice says:

    After 20 years I still remember where I was when I heard and I’m still sad that this lovely woman was taken at only 36 years old…

    • Capepopsie says:

      Me too!

      • Imqrious2 says:

        Same here. I remember the shock hearing about it, and stayed up all night listening to the coverage. It felt almost like a personal loss.

        Watching the funeral procession, seeing the boys made me feel so sad, but when they panned to the flowers with the card that said simply “Mummy”, I just lost it, and I just started full out crying.

    • jenni says:

      Would it have been easier if she hadn’t been beautiful?

      • Cleo says:

        Calm down, none of them even wrote “beautiful.”

      • Jaded says:

        It was her inner beauty that touched people.

      • Sophia's Side eye says:

        People can be lovely on the inside, jenni.

      • Betty says:

        Jenni, obviously you have been fortunate enough to never have lost anyone close to you. Looks have no bearing whatsoever when you lose a parent or any loved one!!! Seriously

    • CynicalAnn says:

      I remember too. I was newly pregnant and we were staying with family friends. We’d watched the news in shock-and then I remember my friend knocking on our bedroom door telling me that she’d died. I cried-pregnancy hormones and it felt like the end of my youth-I’d been such a huge fan of hers as a teenager.

    • Christina says:

      Same here…

  7. India Andrews says:

    For how long are William and Harry going to milk Diana’s death for sympathy?

    • Noname says:

      That’s a bit harsh and I take it you’ve never lost a parent, have you?

      • jenni says:

        Not really that harsh to be honest, I do think William in particular uses it as a deflection technique.

    • Malificent says:

      I think when your mom dies when you are 12 years old, you get a sympathy hall pass for life.

      • lobbit says:

        I agree. Especially since we’re talking about a 12-year-old whose grief/mourning was co-opted by the whole damned world.

    • EO1 says:

      Well he can’t do it anymore when he’s like 50 because younger people are not interested in this whole Diana-Charles-thing or about the circumstances of her death. They know she is William and Harry’s mother, that’s it.

    • milla says:

      Why is this comment even here? To make people who lost their parents at the young age feel like crap???

    • Prince says:

      They often use her when they get bad press. It’s just too obvious at this point. I’m not saying they’re not allowed to grieve but like I said – they also use her when they get criticized.

      • Llamas says:

        A lot of commentors here were complaining that he used her during the nudes trials. He has used her to get out of work and it still hurts him. It’s a balance of both.

    • lobbit says:

      So callous.
      She was their mother. They can invoke her memory whenever they want.

    • Merritt says:

      Diana was their mom. What part of that do all the people who attack them for grieving her not get?

      My dad died about a year and a half ago and I’m an adult. But it is still one of the most difficult things that I’ve experienced. I can’t imagine losing a parent so young and so publicly. Especially when so many people were carrying on in the streets as though their loss was somehow greater than that of Diana’s sons.

    • Jaded says:

      Two children lost their mother in a horrific car crash, followed by years of sensationalism around her personal life, themselves, Charles and Camilla – it was utterly traumatizing for them. They’ve both admitted to having emotional issues as a result that haunt them to this day. Talking about it can help release and heal those old wounds, as they have explained with their mental health-focused charity.

    • suze says:

      You know, I have my share of cynicism over some of the Diana legacy, but one thing I remember very clearly is that she was a great mother. Harry has even said she was the greatest mother in the world. She was hands on, present, and very much a “thinking mum”, in that she gave a lot of thought to how her children, born in the most unusual of circumstances, should be raised.

      I know there are those who raise an eyebrow at the talk of how she made William her confidante in his early teens, and there is probably some truth to it. But she was a loving mother, regardless, and I am sure they still miss her and always will.

      I think it’s perfectly fine for them to make this small commemoration of her death.

  8. guest says:

    Well the comments on the Internet were not just nice. Many criticize them for not letting her rest in peace and using her death for PR games.

    • isakka says:

      People/royalists are not as gullible as they used to be when it comes to the BRF.

      • lobbit says:

        Agree. Also: people/royalists are just mean-spirited.

      • graymatters says:

        And many of them seem to find their way to the DM comments page.

        That said, if William worked more and showed better preparedness with a more cheerful attitude, the trolls would have less to work with.

  9. OTHER RENEE says:

    People want to hear what they have to say. It’s a tribute to her. Some people are going to find ulterior motives in anything they do particularly William. If they had said nothing, people would call them disrespectful. They just can’t win.

  10. Talie says:

    What bothers me about her death, now, is that she just wasn’t done. She had such a big platform and such an important voice…I really do think she was meant to do so much more globally.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      Honestly, I always thought she was actually just getting started. Which seems crazy considering how much she worked during her time in the public eye. But she had been shifting her focus and taking on causes that felt more personal to her I guess. I keep thinking “What would she have to say today?” Because she didn’t pick the PR friendly ones.

      I can’t believe she was only 3 years older than I am now when she died.

      Btw, I think we can criticize the younger royals all day long for all kinds of things but this doesn’t seem like a PR move. If it is part of building Heads Together, I won’t consider that fluff for the purpose of getting them (personally) good press. This can’t be easy. But I guess people feel like Diana belongs to them and they can judge even her sons on her behalf. It’s a bit ridiculous.

  11. Sushi says:

    They have the rights to speak out and defend her . From her death up until now, most of the voices are from Charles and Camillia’s camps. So I am glad that they finally come out and defended their mother. It also has been unfair to use the excuse of Diana’s affairs to defend C & C ‘s actions. Remember Diana was 19 years old at the time. The establishment is totally Charles’s. His friends, his houses, his family, his mistress. I would go insane if my husband should be the one that I trust the most turns out to be my greatest betrayer. She only had affairs after his and his’s mistress ongoing one. My boss at the time had said this ‘She was remarkable, Not many would feel pleasant to shake hands with an leprosy infected person’.
    I like William a bit more now that he opens up. I always have soft spot for Harry ever since sighted his card ‘Mummy’ on top of his mum’s coffin.
    My Mum died 4 years ago and I still think about her everyday. I still feel guilty about what I should not say or do to her.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      Agreed. Her affairs started only after all of Charles’ emotional abuse. Carrying on emotional, and then physical affairs with two women would be a lot for many older, more mature women to deal with, let alone a 19 yr. old girl. FGS, he even carried the Rottweiler’s picture in his diary on his honeymoon! She was dealing with someone who felt he had a “right” to have mistresses. She didn’t stand a chance in that respect.

    • suze says:

      I don’t know that they are “defending” her, per se, but trying to preserve some of her legacy. It is a pity that the Diana Foundation is no more, but I hope they can continue her legacy of charitable contributions in their own way.

  12. Skylark says:

    I see no problem here.

    And, it ties in with their ‘Heads Together’ work which promotes, amongst other things, the importance and value of giving voice to the things that stop you from ‘moving on’.

    • Royalsparkle says:

      The second photo seem more about PR _ happy, than a solemn serious visit.

      There is so much more serious issues in today’s world. That most in the public find it hard to continue to feel the same as it was 20 years ago for the entitled, lazy, dutiless insincere bill middleton I am a prince, dragging his mum death in the public domain – with all the spoilt easy handout millions of luxury lifestyle he has been handed.

      Especially when he lives this entitled secret life – globe hopping, luxury vacations and selective moaning about how hard it is for him with his mum death.

      • Joannie says:

        Well I’m sure they appreciated the gesture. You think because he’s wealthy he doesnt have feelings? Is he responsible for being born into Royalty? I dont think its PR. Have you considered that he actually cares and wants to show support? That he empathizes with those that have lost their loved ones?

  13. Nicole says:

    Here’s the thing Harry and William will be processing Diana’s death for the rest of their lives. My friend lost her mother young and every time a milestone comes up she has to re-process her grief. Weddings, first child, anniversaries, etc. it’s not something you “stop milking” it’s a forever process.

    • Maria says:

      Agreed. My boys (now 35 and 31) lost their Dad to Cancer 21 years ago(10 and 14). Still having trouble with it although it’s getting better. Not something you just snap out of it. Very hard for the survivors.

  14. PettyRiperton says:

    PR move or not Diana wasn’t just a celebrity, princess or tabloid figure to them that was/is their mother. They can honor her every chance they see fit. I agree Willy should stop using her as a excuse for BS. Outside of that I’m good with them wanting people to know the good things about their mother, not just the crap Chuck’s sources and others put out there about her.

  15. CarrieUK says:

    That photo of William looking down at Harry breaks my heart 🙁

  16. perplexed says:

    I wonder how weird it must be for them to see constant footage of Diana for them. The footage sort of creates the illusion in one’s mind that she could walk into your living room at any moment even though she’s dead — not sure if that makes sense. But for Harry and William, or someone like Caroline and JFK Jr., the constant footage must make the grief a little different from other people’s.

  17. Cerys says:

    I agree with the sentiments expressed in the CB article. Losing a parent at such a young age and having to grieve in public must have been horrific. There was a programme on C5 (uk) on Tuesday about Diana’s death and seeing footage again of both boys at the funeral was heartbreaking.
    I think it’s nice they are talking about their mother and rememembering her 20 years on. However I don’t like it when they use her to deflect negative publicity from themselves.