Skip to main content /transcript



Royal Family Gossip

Aired August 14, 2001 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, a sensational new book claims Prince William is a one-man wrecking crew among the girls! Has Di's first- born become the playboy prince? Are he and brother Harry fighting over the same girls? Will Charles every marry his mistress Camilla? Would his sons accept her if he did, and will a frightening fall persuade him to stop risking his neck playing polo?

Joining us from New York, the best-selling of the dishy new book "Diana's Boys," Christopher Andersen. From London, with a British view of royal affairs, best-selling biographer and veteran royal watcher Robert Lacey. In Washington, author of the blockbuster book "The Royals," Kitty Kelley. And back in London, best-selling biographer and long-time observer of the palace scene, Hugo Vickers. And they're all next on LARRY KING LIVE.

One program note before we start: Chandra Levy's parents, Susan and Robert Levy, will be guests on this program in this setting here tomorrow night. The Levys tomorrow evening on LARRY KING LIVE.

We will start with Christopher Andersen, his new book just published, already one of the more-talked about books on the island of Great Britain and as well as in the United States, it's "Diana's Boys: William and Harry and the Mother They Loved." He also wrote the bestseller "The Day Diana Died." This is the research, Christopher, this deals with the boys since the death?

CHRISTOPHER ANDERSEN, AUTHOR, "DIANA'S BOYS": Exactly. Yeah, you know, Larry, I did have sort of a leg up on the entire subject, as you can imagine, having done "The Day Diana Died." A lot of those sources who were very cooperative, and were happy with the way that book turned out, told me more about the relationship of Diana to her sons, and -- I mean, it was a logical thing, really, to write this next chapter in the ongoing saga I think of the royal family.

KING: And you write about the fact that they are apparently very much into the ladies?

ANDERSEN: They are. I mean, you know, much of this book deals with the boys' relationship with their mother and the fact that when she was 20 years old, she became a mother for the first time, and so she lived basically her entire life in that role as mommy, as they called her.

But yes, now they are young men who are -- at least William is cutting a rather wide swathe, I think, through Britain's upper class ladies, and he was linked with a number of women, one is a lady named Davina Duckworth-Chad -- I love saying that name -- she's known as the Deb on the Web in Great Britain, because she posed seductively to promote a Web site there, and a number of other women that I name in the book.

One is familiar to Americans, Lauren Bush -- I mean, they haven't actually met, but he had a crush on her. This is the model and niece of President George W. Bush.

KING: He had a crush on her?

ANDERSEN: Yeah, and they have a cyber relationship going. When he got on the yacht the Alexander to go on a cruise of the Mediterranean, William went into his state room and found an 8x10 glossy that was left there by the state room's previous occupant, happened to be Lauren Bush, and it was just a nice gesture from her and she made a little note on this. But in fact, they began kind of an e-mail relationship there, and friends of Lauren's have said that it's steamy stuff, but have not actually met.

KING: And what about Harry? He likes the women too, young Harry?

ANDERSEN: He does. He does, absolutely. But you know, he is -- I don't think either one of them are shy around girls. There is one young lady, by the way, I think who's interesting -- we should keep our eye on -- and that is Amelia D'Langar, who is this Devonshire beauty, tall, blond, much like the boys' mother. Her nickname is Milly, and she has been photographed recently with Harry at polo matches, but it's William that she has been dating.

And a lot of people don't realize this, but you know, she went to Africa at the same time that William went to Africa recently, she is going to be enrolling in St. Andrew's University, where William is going, so I think she's the one to keep our eye on, she's definitely a favorite of William's.

KING: Let's bring in our panel on that aspect. Robert, does any of this surprise you?

ROBERT LACEY, ROYAL BIOGRAPHER: Doesn't surprise me. I don't know how true any of it is. I mean, I'm glad...

KING: You question Christopher?


LACEY: ... Lauren and -- Lauren and William haven't met. As I understand it, both have absolutely denied this story of an e-mail relationship between the two of them. And I'm sorry also to say I haven't read Christopher's book, because it isn't actually the talk of Britain yet, it hasn't come out here yet.

KING: But you plan to read it, one would presume, as someone who is absorbed with the royals? LACEY: No, I actually -- I actually, I mean, if we are getting straight into this, I actually disapprove of the idea of the book. I mean, it's one thing for dear Kitty Kelley to dish the dirt on grownup royals, because they are grownups and they can take it, and in many cases they have done things which I think are worthy of exposure.

I actually don't think a whole book on Diana's boys is an appropriate thing at this time. They are very sensitive young men, they are trying to lead private lives. And I don't think that spreading who they may be going out with or may not be going out with all across the tabloids of the world is good for them.

KING: Christopher, you may respond before we go to Kitty and Hugo.

ANDERSEN: I certainly would like to. Yeah, this book deals primarily with the boys' relationship with Diana. And I think it's important that we make -- you know, we acknowledge of the fact that, you know, yes, indeed, to some extent, they have been Windsorized since Diana's death, that they enjoy polo, and fox hunting, and all of those various, you know, royal pastimes -- summers at Balmoral.

But the fact of the matter is that their mother was a great influence on their lives, and I think the Windsors -- there are elements of that family that would just as soon forget that Diana ever existed, and this book really reminds the people around the world that in fact Diana's legacy lives on in her sons, and I think it's a very positive thing, it's a sympathetic book, and is by no means salacious or scandalous. I think she deserves credit.

KING: Kitty, what do you think?

KITTY KELLEY, AUTHOR, "THE ROYALS": Well, I think that Prince William certainly got his mother's looks, and as a consequence, he's half movie star, half rock star, and he is probably the saving grace of the monarchy right now, but I don't think that it's any news that this gorgeous man -- I mean, he's drop dead gorgeous, he could probably make cows dance in a field -- that this man has got women falling at his feet is any news.

Christopher, I think you'd have a worldwide exclusive if you told us that this glorious looking young man joined a celibate Benedictine monk abbey.

ANDERSEN: But it's interesting you mentioned drop dead gorgeous, because DDG, which stands for drop dead gorgeous, is exactly the nickname that Diana had for her son. She, above all people, realized that he would be a sex symbol and a heartthrob, and you know, he was initially bashful and kind of rattled by all the attention, but now he has eased into it, and I think he rather enjoys the role.

KING: And Hugo, I want to get your thought before we go to our first break. Your read on this?

HUGO VICKERS, ROYAL BIOGRAPHER: Well, yes, I rather agree with Robert about all these things. But what one must remember, of course, is that Prince Charles himself was something of a heartthrob in his day. Prince William does, of course, combine the best elements of both parents, and I -- I would be very interested to know what Christopher's views are about his relationship with his father, because I think actually that was always very strong. It just was eclipsed in the public mind by the more kind of outward vision of the relationship with Diana.

But I think actually the relationship with the father has been totally important through the lives of both those boys.

KING: We will pick up on that right after we come back from the break. We'll be right back with our panel, they're our guests for the hour, we'll be including your phone calls. This is LARRY KING LIVE, don't go away.


KING: OK, Christopher Andersen, do you write about relationship of the boys with their father?

ANDERSEN: Indeed, I do. And absolutely, Charles was very away from the cameras. He was always an affectionate loving father. Even when they were toddlers he played a game called big bad wolf where he stood in the doorway of their nursery and they tried to get past him. Very tactile father.

But there were lapses. Indeed, when William was struck with a golf club at the age of eight by a friend at school, it was an accident, and seriously injured and underwent surgery, you know, Charles decided to go to the opera while his wife sat at Williams's bedside. It showed a lack of compassion, a lack of understanding on the part -- not that I believe Charles is not an affectionate father -- but the fact was he just didn't get it. That was one of the points where you can see the difference.


LACEY: This is quite untrue. This is totally -- I have to try and break in here. This has been very well explored. This was at a time of Charles and Diana's relationship when the couple were not on speaking terms and Diana in particular, could not tolerate Charles's presence.

When he heard about his son's accident, he drove straight there from a different place because the couple were already living separately, and spent as much time as he could. But his wife said she did not want him there in the hospital. And he left to avoid a scene.

ANDERSEN: I disagree. As a matter of fact, he basically, I mean he did go to the hospital and then he left and he was criticized widely in the press as you well know, screaming headlines, "Where Are You, Prince Charles."

LACEY: I'm afraid, Christopher, you are reading the headlines too much. That was exactly the effect that Diana wanted to achieve. Diana was a mistress of manipulation of the press. She had done the same thing at the very same time over her father's death.


LACEY: And she absolutely refused to allow Charles to accompany her and be with her. And it got the headlines that she wanted and which you are just repeating.

KING: Obviously, Robert, you are very upset with concept of this book.

LACEY: I am just upset about inaccuracy and the exaggeration. And for Christopher to draw these lessons from -- I mean, this is not inner knowledge I'm talking about. This particular episode over the golf club has been enormously analyzed over here at least.

And there is very good evidence that Diana, not just over the golf club, but when her father died about the same time, deliberately shunned her husband to create this image.

KING: Let me bring in Kitty. Do you know of this incident and what are your thoughts?

KELLEY: Well, I think just the disparity of views here among all of us tells you just a little bit of what those children went through in that very tormented and torn marriage.

KING: Yep, well said. Hugo, is the family going to try to, do you think, affect who William chooses in life?

VICKERS: Well, that will be very interesting how that comes about. I think much less so than would have been this the past, quite frankly. I think that Prince William is very much a man who knows his own mind and will be free to make his own decision.

You see, one of the things I suspect that Christopher is doing in this book is talking about the so-called "Windsorizing" of William and Harry as if somehow this is kind of like turning them into these figures from an alien age, which I don't accept all. I think that some of the premises, you know, of are very false.

If I could, I should just also chip in about the business with the -- with the hospital incident. I mean one of the other considerations that Prince Charles did have that evening was that he did actually have an official engagement to take part in, and as I remember it, he was completely convinced that his son was in no danger at all at this point, and that it was therefore safe for him to undertake that engagement and not to disappoint a lot of people.

KING: Christopher, are you aware that your book is apparently angering some people?

ANDERSEN: Well, it surprises me on one level and it doesn't on another. There are partisans here. There are people who believe, you know, Charles has gotten a rotten deal and frankly I feel that in recent years, there has been a lot of posthumous Diana bashing in the press. And what I'm trying to do here is say, look, you can say she was at times difficult and neurotic, that she knew how to manipulate press. Elements of that are true, but the one thing I don't think you can justifiably do is criticize the kind of mother she was. I mean she was focused. She was very concerned about what kind of king William would be.

I think she was trying to turn them into new breed of royal that frankly would be relevant in the 21st century in a way that Charles just isn't. I mean...


KING: Go ahead, Kitty.

KELLEY: Sorry, Christopher, I think the one thing that you are up against here, ever since Diana's death, and we are coming to the fourth anniversary of her death, there has been a hands-off policy on the young boys and it has been especially so in Britain.

And I think that is probably what is galling to a lot of people and i think they have great sympathy for these two young men, and yet William is going to be going into college, and he is going to be undergoing a great deal of scrutiny, because he is the number one or he will be the number one celebrity in the world.

But Christopher, I think that is kind of what you are up against right now.

KING: But he does, Kitty. Christopher has excellent credentials: "TIME" magazine, "People" magazine. He's written hundreds of articles. He's not exactly, you know, someone coming out of the bushes here.

ANDERSEN: It is funny, Larry...

KELLEY: The Bushes? Oh, I'm coming out of the bushes.

ANDERSEN: I knew you would get that in. Larry, I wanted to say that I have been on the royals beat -- I have been covering William and Harry in a sense since before they were born.

When I was a senior editor at "People" magazine I was in charge of their royals coverage, and I can remember how we waited with breathless anticipation for William's arrival, his birth. And we had two covers. We had one cover that was mocked up that said "It Is a Boy" and one that said "It Is a Girl."

And since we didn't know what the color was going to be we kind of decided on green you know, noncommittal green. At the last minute we managed to slap blue on cover for William.

KING: Let me get another break. Kitty, I meant by bushes is the Bush Leagues. It's a baseball term, Kitty.

KELLEY: Oh, I was thinking, Bush -- our Bush. KING: No, no, Kitty, trust me. It's baseball. We will be back with more of our panel and your phone calls. Tomorrow night, the Levys, Susan and Robert Levy right here on "LARRY KING LIVE." Don't go away.


KING: Before we talk about Camilla and her involvement with the boys and this relationship and its future, Robert Lacey, have they tried to downplay Diana at all in all of this? Has she borne the brunt of some of this? Has her reputation been reduced?

LACEY: I think there is no doubt at all as Christopher says, that there has been a demythologizing of Dina since her death. I agree with him as being most unfair. And I was absolutely delighted to hear that he didn't actually know the sex of the baby -- the royal baby before it appeared.

It is incredibly difficult to get a balance here, and as you may detect there is still a hangover of the civil war between the Wales that split Britain. And again, as Kitty says, the great importance of William for the future is that, not just physically, but it would seem -- and I would emphasize it would seem -- in so many ways, that he combines he best of both parents. We have to be aware that this all may be wishful thinking and again, without wishing to be a killjoy, I think one can place too much reliance on fairly slender evidence.

KING: Hugo, is her, in your opinion, image tarnished?

VICKERS: Not particularly. But I agree with Robert. I think actually there have actually have been two good books written about her. One, which we discussed on this program sometime ago by Sally Smith.

And the other one, rather more controversially, by Patrick Jepson her private secretary which had a lot of flack in this country because was an insider who really obviously did know what was going on, and then decided to tell his story. But I personally found it extremely convincing, and I think those two accounts perfectly satisfy me that we are getting somewhere close to the real Diana.

But of course you know other thing which is a big problem is that she is isn't around anymore. She hasn't been around for four years and so inevitably people are likely to move on concentrate more on the living ones, that is, I'm afraid, that is what happens.

KING: Would you agree, Kitty, that in the United States, she would be the most popular of all of them?

KELLEY: No question. Hands down. And probably still is. They have only to look at these pictures, and absolutely sigh. You know the two books that Hugo just mentioned are books, especially the Patrick Jepson one, he had been with her for almost 10 years, and Prince William was outraged by that book.

Prince William is going to have trouble, I think, relating to the media that is going to be fixated on him, because he really blames the media for his mother's death. He knows the misery she went through from the paparazzi. And I think it is going to be very hard for him in the future to relate comfortably with the media.

KING: Christopher, do the boys like Camilla?

ANDERSEN: Very much, as a matter of fact. It was in 1998 that William went ahead and sort of engineered a kind of dropping-in at Saint James's Palace. And they met for the first time, 10 months after his mother's death. I think they hit it off and they like her primarily because she makes their father very happy. I think Diane had come to accept the fact that this was a love affair that was going to last a lifetime between Camilla and Charles.

She is nothing like Dina though, and that is a plus. She is 16 months older than Charles. She is no fashion plate. And she doesn't try run their lives. She doesn't try be replacements for their mother. So in this sense I think they have accepted her. Have to wait and see though, if the queen mother accepts her, or if the queen ever accepts her as Charles's wife, if that is in the cards at all.

KING: We'll take another break. We'll be right back. We will be include your phone calls and in a little while we will reintroduce our panel. This is LARRY KING LIVE, don't go away.


KING: Robert Lacey, are there are concerns about Prince Charles continuing with the polo?

LACEY: I think there are in Britain, yes, for several reasons. You alluded at the beginning of the show to the physical danger. This is actually remarkably similar to his predecessor, the prince of wales who became Edward VIII. His passion was steeple chasing, and it was actually his father, King George V, who ordered him to stop. Elizabeth II is a much less directive parent than her predecessors.

There is another risk that I see in polo. Polo is a very nouveau rich, I think, rather vulgar game. I can say that having played it myself, and I don't think it does Prince Charles's image, or, I dare say, this is probably arrogant of me, his spirit any good. I don't think it is a good thing for him to be involved in.

I also, I'm afraid, don't think it is a good thing for him to be encouraging his sons to get involved in. It is a very "playboy" set. We saw Harry recently all night clubbing, and why not, some might say, playing polo down in south of Spain. I think the whole polo syndrome is something that the royal family would do very well to get uninvolved with as soon as possible.

KING: Kitty, it is kind of hoi polloi, although it is an incredible support in which, I have been told, that the horse is 80 percent of the game, the rider 20 percent. But it is a great sport to watch. But it is hoi polloi isn't it.

KELLEY: Yes, I do agree with Robert. The time is come and gone for the royals to be involved with Polo. I mean it is -- it just increases that dissipated aristo-image that they have, and it is too of bad to encourage someone like Prince William to get involved.

KING: Do you agree, Hugo Vickers?

VICKERS: Well, when Robert talks about the steeple-chasing of the duke of Windsor and that was a great danger, and I was surprised that he takes such a strong line about it.

I mean, I personally feel that the Prince of wales has so many boring things that he has to do, that if he enjoys playing polo, so much the better. I also feel any minute in this country probably hunting with dogs, which is another thing he likes to do, hunting on horseback obviously, is quite likely to be banned by labor government in which case you know, his chances of taking part in these kinds of sports are going to be somewhat restricted once again,

My feeling, I must admit, without having been part of this (UNINTELLIGIBLE) polo world myself, is that it's a long tradition going back to India, Lord Mountbatten, Prince Phillip and so forth, that if he enjoys playing polo, who am I to say that he should stop doing so. I think he should be allowed to continue.

KING: Christopher, are the boys going to play?

ANDERSEN: Absolutely. As a matter of fact, William is so determined to learn how to play that -- he is left handed and he had to learn to play right handed, because it's really the only way as I understand it, that you can play polo. So he is going to continue doing it. But I'm more concerned about some of the -- as far as his physical safety is concerned -- about some of the...

KING: Security?

ANDERSEN: Security, yes. He is going to St. Andrews, and I think his protectors are going to face something of a security nightmare up there. There are all of these various extremist groups, I mean there is one that -- there are several animal rights extremists, who are very upset about his fox hunting which he does without apology.

There are anti-monarchist groups, there is one called MAM, Movement Against Monarchy, rather violent group. Scottish nationalist groups that can be extremist and violent. And of course we have the real I.R.A. which just Soft a bomb in London last week, and that is splinter group of I.R.A. and they killed 28 people in Ulster a couple years ago when they set off a bomb there.

And they posted on their Web site at one point you know statements telling their members where William could be spotted on the campus of St. Andrews at, quote, "at accurate range." I mean this is very disturbing.

KING: Wow. Let me break and come back, We will reintroduce our panel, we will include your phone calls. This is LARRY KING LIVE. The Levys tomorrow night, Susan and Robert Levy, the parents of the still missing Chandra Levy. This LARRY KING LIVE in Los Angeles. Don't go away.


KING: Welcome back to LARRY KING LIVE. Let's reintroduce our panel. In New York, Christopher Andersen, his brand new book is "Diana's Boys: William and Harry and the Mother They Loved." He also wrote the bestseller "The Day Diana Died." In London, Robert Lacey, bestselling biographer, veteran royal watcher, upcoming book for the queen's golden jubilee is "Royal: the Lives of the House of Windsor."

In Washington, Kitty Kelley, bestselling biographer, the author of the book, a major hit, "The Royals," is now working on a book on the dynasty of the Bush family. And in London, Hugo Vickers, bestselling biographer, veteran royal watcher. His latest book on Prince Philip's mother, soon to be published in the United States, is "Alice, Princess Andrew of Greece."

We go to calls. Buckingham, Pennsylvania, hello.

Hello, are you there? Buckingham, are you there? Go ahead, speak, yes. Go ahead.

CALLER: Hello.

KING: Yes.

CALLER: My question is, do William and Harry visit their mother's grave, or mark the anniversary of her death in any special way?

KING: Christopher?

ANDERSEN: Yeah, they do, as a matter of fact, go to her grave periodically, at Althrop, the Spencer family estate. I think it's very interesting, however, and very telling that, according to Earl Spencer, Charles has not visited the grave site since the funeral in these past four years. That may tell, you know, that Charles still views Diana as essentially his ex-wife.

KING: Boston, Massachusetts, hello.

CALLER: Hello. My question is for Mr. Andersen. I wonder why you can't come up to date, Mr. Andersen, and see the boys, the Prince William as a future king of England, he needs to be, as you rather rudely say, Windsorized. He is surrounded by loving grandmother, great grandmother and grandfather, and we've just seen them, the two boys embracing their father so beautifully and lovingly. Why can't you leave the past in the past and let these boys have their normal life and be trained for what he will one day be, a king of England?

KING: Christopher.

ANDERSEN: Sure. What I believe is that the reason we now see these open and public displays on the part of the rest of the royals is that Diana set the pace. You didn't see it before her death. Charles was not demonstrative in public. And now, once -- I'm not saying there is anything wrong with this, I think Charles has really risen to the occasion, he was destroyed, as I wrote, by his wife's death, he really took it very hard -- this was the mother of his children, after all.

And suddenly, he was embracing the boys, you know, kissing them publicly and making no secret of the fact that they had a very warm familial, tactile relationship. So, that's great, and absolutely I agree that they have a very good relationship with the queen. She is just not terribly touchy-feely, and never has been. But Charles at least has made the change.

I'm not in any way saying that there is anything wrong with being Windsorized, but I don't think we want them Windsorized to the exclusion of Diana's influence, because she's the person who really put them -- she is really one of the I think few royals who connected with her own children, and in the way that she connected with average people. And because of that, they are going to be able to connect with the average person.

KING: Robert, do you have a comment on that?

LACEY: Well, I think the caller -- I sympathize with what the caller seems to be saying, is that William has got a job of work to do in the future, and I think the caller seem to be saying, and I certainly agree with this, that books like -- books like this do not, in fact, help. He is incredibly sensitive, coming to terms with celebrity is really difficult for him.

You could argue he should just be hardened and toughened, but there is a deliberate policy to try and keep him out of the public eye. He himself has said, and here is an interesting echo of Diana, he does not want to be called royal highness for the foreseeable future, certainly while he is at the university, doesn't want the people coming up to him on a disco floor -- sorry, that sounds old- fashioned already, doesn't it -- and calling him your royal highness.

He himself is trying to be low-key and avoid too much public scrutiny. He feels this is what he wants, the people around him feel this, and therefore I don't actually feel that a book that goes -- that makes all sorts of apparently harmless speculations, but which will get back to him and make him retire even more into his shell, I don't think it's helpful.

KING: Kitty, who has written books often sparing no one, do you buy Robert's argument, or do you think Christopher certainly is in his right to write this book about the boys?

KELLEY: Both. I think, though, that Prince William is going to have a long, long time before he ever becomes Prince of Wales. And it's going to be very hard for the palace to control the kind of media scrutiny. Ideally, it would be nice to let them grow up and become young men without being in the media spotlight, but I just don't think that's going to happen, so I don't think that's realistic.

KING: Hugo, is it unrealistic to think that Christopher is out there alone, or there will be other books and they will be followed and they will be photographed, correct?

VICKERS: Well, there will be other books and of course they will be photographed, but as you probably know, in this country, they have been very, very strict about trying to protect these two boys. And I think this is very much based on the lessons that we should learn from the death of Diana. I mean, you could see exactly how the media frenzy got completely out of control and led eventually, one way or another, to that dreadful tragedy, and we don't want this sort of thing happening again.

Of course, they will be better protected. I mean, she didn't have the sort of protection officers that they did. I mean, she voluntarily surrendered them. And they will be better protected, and of course they do also have access to place like Balmoral, which they very much, which of course she was excluded from pretty much at the end of her life.

But anything that can be done to allow Prince William to grow up in as normal as possible a way will be of great help to him, and therefore also to him when he becomes king, and therefore to the nation.

KING: We'll be back with more calls for our panel on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE right after this.


KING: We are back with our panel. Back to your phone calls. Fitchburg, Massachusetts, hello.

CALLER: Hello, Larry,


CALLER: Two-part question. I noticed the press writes about William's female friends. However, will the failure of Charles and Diana's marriage hinder William from getting married any time soon? And will William join any of England's military forces?

KING: Christopher?

ANDERSEN: Well, I think, you know, we've got to look at what these kids went as they -- they never -- I mean, Diana's and Charles's marriage was in trouble from the get-go. When she was three months pregnant with William, she threw herself down the stairs of Sandringham. I mean, they never knew a time when they were -- their parents were happily married, so I think William justifiably will be very cautious and very careful in whom he chooses to take as a bride. So I don't see that happening any time soon.

KING: And the military?

ANDERSEN: Oh, he is excels in the cadet corps. He did at Eton. He was fascinated with military things, and there has been some speculation that, indeed, he will have a career in a military. And I think that's likely, considering what his -- the rest of the Windsors have done.

KING: Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. Quickly, my 8-year-old son loved your shark show last night.

KING: Thank you.

CALLER: My question to the panel is, what's the secret to the longevity of the queen mother, and how is her current health?

KING: Mr. Lacey, you want to take that one first?

LACEY: Well the quick answer is gin and Dubonnet, which she consumes in generous quantities every lunchtime, and is very fond of champagne. It's a very good question. I mean, here is a real good news story. We have just celebrated her 101st birthday. And she is currently up in this castle she renovated up in Scotland, the castle of Mey. She is rather upset, apparently, at the number of TV trucks that are hidden in the barns in the neighborhood, ostensibly covering her holiday, but she fears maybe ghoulishly waiting for day of her departure, which she doesn't intend to be before the year 2002 when she's going to celebrate -- she feels -- her daughter's Golden Jubilee. She's looking forward to being at her side.

KING: You -- Hugo Vickers, she was hospitalized recently. Is everything OK?

VICKERS: She was hospitalized. That is absolutely true. I was there outside the hospital when she came out. And she looked absolutely amazing. I was also there on the day of her 101st birthday and had a word with her, and I can say she was in extremely good health and she was as bright as anything, very alert, and taking a lot in.

I would say that the real reason for her longevity is her zest for life. She just takes a huge interest in everything, and she concentrates very hard, and she doesn't like to disappoint people. She likes -- her philosophy of life is that if you come into her orbit, your life must get better. And that's -- not everybody takes that view, actually.

KING: Kitty, would you call her an activist with regard to the family?

KELLEY: Oh, yes, absolutely. She is an activist. She has helped the monarchy so much, since the day she married into it. You know, long may she wave.

KING: Well said. Elliott Lake, Ontario. Hello.

CALLER: Yes, hello. Good evening, Larry.


CALLER: I have a two-part question. First part being, does grandma have much input -- I mean great-great grandma -- not the queen, the queen mother. And the second part is, how much input does Diana's family have in the -- Earl Spencer did make a very, very emotional tribute to her. And I was just wondering how much input they have over the boys.

KING: Hugo Vickers, you want to take that one?

VICKERS: Well, I think that the queen mother had a -- obviously a very big influence in the life of the queen, Princess Margaret, and particularly the Prince of Wales. I would say she probably has rather less influence on Prince William because they are just generations -- another generation apart. As for Earl Spencer, he makes comments occasionally that he is pleased in the way the boys are developing and things, but I suspect that he doesn't have a very strong influence, frankly, on their day-to-day welfare.

KING: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. I would like to direct this question to Hugo and Robert since they do live in London. Has there been any reaction to Mr. Andersen's book from Buckingham Palace, either officially or off the record?

KING: Robert?

LACEY: Well, as I said earlier, I'm afraid no. I mean, I actually phoned both. I'm afraid, Christopher, they haven't heard of you. But you're doing your best to put that right. And I -- I don't want to sound as though I've got it in for you. I thought the points you made earlier about the security worries about Prince Andrew -- sorry, Prince William at St. Andrews are very much to the point.

Let's not forget that the last great royal funeral before Diana's was Lord Mountbatten, actually killed -- assassinated deliberately by the I.R.A. One of the bad bits of news we had today in Britain is the I.R.A. tearing up their commitment to remove arms, and this has an implication for the royal family that perhaps hasn't quite been realized yet.

KING: Hugo, would you add anything to that?

VICKERS: Well, the question was, has Buckingham Palace reacted to this book. No, no, they haven't. I don't suppose that they will, I'm afraid.

KING: We'll take a break and be back with more. This is LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.


KING: Setaucket, New York. Hello.

CALLER: Hello, Larry.


CALLER: Your show is my favorite show.

KING: Thank you.

CALLER: My question is for the panel. Would the boys have an access to their own money? Or are they on some sort of allowance?

KING: Christopher Andersen, what's their financial picture?

ANDERSEN: Well, before I go into that, I just want to address that Buckingham Palace reaction thing real quickly, Larry. Three years ago, when I published "The Day Diana Died," which was an international best seller, I talked to the people at the hospital. I was the first person to interview the staff there, and I revealed that the queen had called asking where the royal jewels were, and that this was related to people from the hospital staff there, by the consulate in Paris and that caused a...

LACEY: Let me -- I have got...

ANDERSEN: Let me finish, let me finish. I let you talk before. Now I would like to finish.

KING: Let him finish, Robert.

LACEY: OK. Sorry.

ANDERSEN: And for pointing out the fact that the queen really behaved rather badly after Diana's death, refusing to come back to London from Balmoral and refusing to (UNINTELLIGIBLE)...

KING: What does that have to do with Buckingham commenting on...

ANDERSEN: I was -- at that point I was formally denounced by Buckingham Palace. They certainly did react. I sort of wore that as a badge of honor at the time, so the reason that there's been no reaction so far from Buckingham Palace about this book is that it is not in England yet. It has not been published in Great Britain will be shortly, so in the coming few days...


LACEY: ... the queen behaving badly, not coming down to Balmoral, the queen's priority are these two boys you are writing about, Christopher. She stayed up in Balmoral to look after them. She also stayed there to work with her family and staff on the details of the funeral, which turned out to be the most marvelous triumph, and which was particularly a triumph because the boys had the strength to be able to walk through the streets as a result of the care they received from these grandparents that you are maligning.

ANDERSEN: I'm not maligning the grandparents, and we know that they resisted even giving Diana a big funeral -- it was really Charles and Tony Blair who convinced the queen to go ahead and show Diana the kind of respect and deference that the people thought she deserved, by lowering -- by giving her that kind of a funeral.


KING: ... what was the question -- I forgot the question -- Kitty.

KELLEY: The question -- she asked about money, about Prince William and Harry. Prince William will come into a vast fortune, a vast fortune, Harry will not. And this was always of concern to the princess of Wales. And her own father, the Earl Spencer, gave her in excess of $1.5 million to invest for Harry, because Diana was always concerned about his future.

KING: Well said. And we will be back with our remaining moments, get another call or two in as well, don't go away.


KING: We're going to get a couple more calls in. Las Vegas, hello.

CALLER: Yes, Larry, I was wondering -- it's a two-part question. Why is Charles philanthropist's side, his charitable side is not more widely reported, and how much has he involved the children in that side of him that Diana got all the credit for, but he is a very charitable person from what I understand.

KING: Kitty?

KELLEY: Well, I think that Charles' charitable side is quite well-known, especially in Britain. He has the prince of Wales' trust and he gives a great deal of money to inner city schools, and training, and education, so I think it's really quite well known.

KING: Not as well in the United States. Bloomington, Illinois, hello.

CALLER: Larry, this is a question that has probably been asked many times, but is there any possibility that they would bypass Charles in favor of Prince William for the next king?

KING: Robert Lacey, any chance of that?

LACEY: Not the slightest chance, no. And Kitty was quite right to say that actually William's future is not really as king -- I mean, he will be that eventually, but waiting first to become prince of Wales. It is said that when this idea, which was indeed much mooted at the time of the divorce, that Charles should be pushed aside and Diana's encouragement of this in her famous Panorama television interview counted against her with the royal family.

William was actually watching a program in which people were being invited to phone in about setting Prince Charles aside, and Diana told the story that he phoned up, without saying who he was of course, and said no, Prince Charles should have the job.

KING: Christopher, are you optimistic about these boys? ANDERSEN: Absolutely. I think that they are remarkably well grounded young men, I think their relationship has remained essentially unchanged. You know, William has always been very protective of Harry, Harry has also looked up to his older brother, and I think no one has gone through what these two young men have gone through and their tremendous support for one another. So, I'm very optimistic about them.

KING: Robert, are they -- are they very popular in Great Britain? Both of them?

LACEY: Oh, massively. Massively popular, yes. And this is the problem. You know, heartthrobs of the future. I think here in Britain we must try very hard not to place on ordinary human beings all the weight of expectations that were placed on Charles and Diana, which they both disappointed, but in which we played a role, in making it so difficult to live out our fantasies.

KING: Kitty, would you want to be a royal?

KELLEY: No, but I love reading about them, Larry.

KING: Why?

KELLEY: After all, what do they have to do other than live happily ever after? And I think we all want to look up to somebody, unfortunately.

KING: Hugo, is the interest still tremendous in Great Britain just about them?

VICKERS: Yes, it is. It's very intense, and of course next summer will be the queen's golden jubilee, she will have been reigned on the throne for 50 years, and there will be really lots of celebrations planned, and that should be a very exciting time, and it should be a rather upbeat time I think for the monarchy.

KING: Thank you all very much, Christopher Andersen, the new book is out, Robert Lacey, Kitty Kelley, Hugo Vickers. We will be hearing from them again. Our subject tonight: The ever-interesting royals, they do not fade way.

Tomorrow, Susan and Robert Levy will be here to join us to talk about their missing daughter Chandra. It has been well over 100 days. Susan and Robert Levy tomorrow night on LARRY KING LIVE. Stay tuned now for "CNN TONIGHT." I'm Larry King. For all of our guests and our crews, good night.



4:30pm ET, 4/16

Back to the top