"If something, God forbid, had happened to him, the interview would not have run at this particular time," King said

By Erin Hill
March 17, 2021 12:33 PM
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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry reportedly had plans in place to postpone the broadcast of their interview with Oprah Winfrey if Harry's grandfather, Prince Philip, had died.

Gayle King, who is friends with Oprah and the Duchess of Sussex, revealed on her SiriusXM radio show, Gayle King in the House, on Wednesday that the couple, who filmed the interview before Philip was admitted into the hospital on Feb. 16, never intended to have their sit-down air if the Duke of Edinburgh passed away.

"Well, just so you know, they had done that interview before Prince Phillip went into the hospital," King said. "If something, God forbid, had happened to him, the interview would not have run at this particular time. But the interview was done and was scheduled before he went into the hospital. But a lot of people have raised that point."

Philip returned home to Windsor Castle on Tuesday after spending four weeks in the hospital following treatment for an infection and a successful procedure for a pre-existing condition.

On the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's decision to speak out publicly about their experiences as senior working royals and why they decided to step back from their royal roles, King added, "I think that Harry and Meghan both have been through so much for the past three years and they really have tried to work it out privately. They really have tried to get help, and nothing was working.

"So I think they wanted people to have some understanding about why they made the decision that they made and what they've been going through, and I do think that they accomplished that. I do. I think it was very brave of her and Harry to reveal what they did. It's unheard of, and it certainly has been a 'bombshell', is the word."

"'There were six or seven that night," she added. "I stopped counting at six. It was bombshell after bombshell after bombshell, but I do believe it was an honest conversation. I'm hoping it will lead to change."

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During the couple's sit-down with Oprah on March 7, Meghan revealed royal life took a staggering toll on her mental health and that she had suicidal thoughts. She also said her son Archie was denied a royal title and royal protection — and that there were "concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he's born."

Oprah With Meghan And Harry
Meghan Markle
| Credit: CBS/Youtube

On Tuesday, King revealed on CBS This Morning that Harry spoke with William and Charles over the weekend.

"Well, I'm not trying to break news, but I did actually call them to see how they were feeling, and it's true, Harry has talked to his brother and he has talked to his father too," King said. "The word I was given was that those conversations were not productive. But they are glad that they have at least started a conversation.

"And I think what is still upsetting to them is the palace keep saying they want to work it out privately, but yet, they believe these false stories are coming out that are very disparaging against Meghan, still."

She added that "no one in the royal family has talked to Meghan yet, at this particular time."

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"I think it's frustrating for them to see that it's a racial conversation about the royal family when all they wanted all along was for the royals to intervene and tell the press to stop with the unfair, inaccurate, false stories that definitely have a racial slant," King continued.

"And until you can acknowledge that, I think it's going to be hard to move forward. But they both want to move forward with this and they both want healing in this family. At the end of the day, that is Harry's family."

Meghan and Harry's interview continues to send shockwaves through the royal family. As the royals and their staffs digested the various claims and counter-claims in the wake of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's sit-down, there was "anger," a palace source tells PEOPLE in this week's cover story: "There were genuinely mixed emotions and deep sorrow and shock there too."