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CNN LARRY KING WEEKEND

Encore Presentation: Interview With Prince Albert of Monaco

Aired September 15, 2002 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, Princess Grace, a Hollywood legend, a true American princess. Her life cut short with a fatal car crash. And 20 years later after that shocking tragedy, we pay tribute. Prince Albert of Monaco, Princess Grace's only son and heir to the throne is next on LARRY KING WEEKEND.
Thanks for joining us. As Grace Kelly, she reigned as Hollywood royalty, an Oscar-winning star of the silver screen. As Princess Grace of Monaco, she lived what seemed at least to her adoring public a real-life fairy tale. But on September 13, 1982, Princess Grace had a stroke while driving to the palace in Monaco. She lost control, and the car plunged down a steep bank. She was dead at age 52.

Her daughter, Princess Stephanie, a passenger in the car, was seriously injured but eventually recovered. Grace's legacy lives on through her husband, Prince Ranier, and their three children.

A while back, we shared an hour with her only son, Prince Albert of Monaco, and we begin tonight with his recollections of a remarkable mother.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PRINCE ALBERT, HEIR TO THE THRONE OF MONACO: She was the best mom you could ever want. She was just incredible, always there for us, always obviously providing care, love, and warmth, and compassion when needed.

KING: Did she spoil you?

PRINCE ALBERT: I never had the impression that she or my dad ever spoiled us. I mean, I never was accused of being a spoiled brat, so...

KING: Not like other princes who possibly could have that as a correct accusation.

PRINCE ALBERT: Possibly.

KING: Now she was born of wealth, your mother, of her own right in America. The Kelly family was no, you know, slouch, but she didn't have that air about her. She didn't act above things.

PRINCE ALBERT: No. She was very -- I was going to say human, but for lack of a better word, she was incredibly accessible to people who she made herself available to. And she was the opposite of being conceited or pompous or ever wanted to come across that way. And I think that she taught us a lot on how to act and how to be, and it's not because you're born in this type of situation that you have to act differently. You have to be yourself.

KING: And you weren't placed with servants a lot then? You had -- You had gone with your mother.

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, yeah. We'd always have breakfast together, and mom would cook breakfast for us. It's only when we had guests or whatever that, you know, we'd have servants around and we'd have that kind of personnel. But we did have intimate family moments just like any other family.

KING: Now, of course, Your Highness, you don't come from an objective position. There were stories all along about your mother and other men. Did you ever see any instance...

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: ... of family problems? You just -- None?

PRINCE ALBERT: None whatsoever. And, in fact, I never understood why -- I understand why they came out with these books, but it was pure fabrication, pure innuendo, and we, you know -- You shouldn't even really look at these stories.

KING: Did they argue? Did they do things like -- You said they were a normal couple. "Why didn't you bring home this? You said -- You forgot me."

PRINCE ALBERT: You know, like any couple, I guess they had, you know, little arguments like that...

KING: You never saw any...

PRINCE ALBERT: ... small things, but I never saw anything more than that.

KING: Where were you -- How old were you when your mother died?

PRINCE ALBERT: I was 24.

KING: How did you hear about it? Where were you?

PRINCE ALBERT: I was up at our country house, so she had left there with my sister, Stephanie to go back down to Monaco.

KING: You had seen her off?

PRINCE ALBERT: I saw her briefly. She came in my room, in fact, to wake me up. This was a Monday morning.

KING: You had to get up, and so she...

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. And then she left before I got down to the breakfast table. KING: How did you hear about it?

PRINCE ALBERT: My father told me. He heard about it...

KING: By phone?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, he heard about it through security.

KING: This has got -- You know, I mean, mothers don't die young. They're going to die before you. Do you remember how you reacted?

PRINCE ALBERT: It was shock and disbelief at first. And then, you know, the reality of it all slowly sinks in, but those first few hours or few days, you don't want to accept it. And then, you know, time tells you otherwise.

KING: How was your dad?

PRINCE ALBERT: You know, he's great now. He's fine, but...

KING: Then.

PRINCE ALBERT: It was very, very difficult for him.

KING: I remember the funeral. He looked like he needed help. I mean, he was a broken man.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah,, pretty much. I mean, we were all broken, but he sort of had to -- I mean, us kids had to help him a little bit.

KING: As the years have gone on, did you want him to remarry?

PRINCE ALBERT: I don't know. Not necessarily remarrying. That's a very personal thing, but I wish he would have -- He's a very private man, and he's very -- He's a very shy man in a way.

KING: Really?

PRINCE ALBERT: I don't think he'll mind my saying that. And, you know, we try to get him to be with his friends and try to not have him be alone. He is alone sometimes 'cause my sisters have their lives and I started having...

KING: Does he tend to be alone at times?

PRINCE ALBERT: At times, yes. And so we try to get him out and we try to have him meet new people, and I'm sorry in a way he hasn't met someone that could be a companion for him.

KING: Back with Prince Albert of Monaco after this.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "HIGH NOON") GRACE KELLY: You're asking me to wait an hour to find out if I'm going to be a wife or a widow. I say it's too long to wait; I won't do it.

GARY COOPER, ACTOR: Amy...

KELLY: I mean it. If you won't go with me now, I'll be on that train when it leaves here.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Welcome back. Tonight, we're paying tribute to Grace Kelly, 20 years after her death. And like their mother, her three children have gotten a lot of ink in the tabloids. I asked Prince Albert what all the fuss was about, especially with his sisters.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KING: Why are they seemingly always in the news?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, because the press likes beautiful, young women, and they photograph well.

KING: They do.

PRINCE ALBERT: And, you know, they lead interesting lives.

KING: Now in ages, how do we have it? You're 40.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. Caroline is a year older than me.

KING: Forty-one. And Stephanie?

PRINCE ALBERT: And Stephanie is seven years younger.

KING: Are you close?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, yeah. You know, sometimes the press says, oh, I'm closer to Stephanie because I'm closer in age, or that I spend more time with her. But I'm equally close to Caroline as I am to Stephanie.

As an older brother, I felt as though I had to keep a closer eye on her and had to take care of her more. And it turned out that I didn't have to take care of her.

KING: How did they deal with their mother's death?

PRINCE ALBERT: You know, in different ways. They have different characters, but they were both equally shattered. Obviously, Stephanie was in the accident with mom, so...

KING: Recovered completely, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. But, you know, I don't think the mental scars will ever completely heal for her. KING: Was Stephanie conscious when her mother died?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Do you know what that might have done to her?

PRINCE ALBERT: I can't even begin to imagine. You know, we have talked about it a little bit, but it was hard for her to talk about it in the beginning, and it will probably, you know -- It's such an incredible tragic moment that it's hard for us to fathom it.

KING: Do you think they'll find happiness?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Which one has a better chance at it?

PRINCE ALBERT: I don't know. I think they both do. I think it's...

KING: Tell us about Caroline now.

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, Caroline now is, as Stephanie, I'm going to say is busy being a mom.

KING: Both have children.

PRINCE ALBERT: They've been wonderful mothers. They have great kids. I love my nieces and nephews.

KING: Now one lost a husband, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Caroline lost her husband in 1990.

KING: Also a...

PRINCE ALBERT: No, this was a motorboat accident.

KING: That's right, a motorboat. Did she must feel like "The odds are against me."

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes. That's why, you know, she has had friends and relationships since then, but, no, it was also extremely difficult for her to get over that.

KING: Is her romantic life -- I mean, is she having a good social life?

PRINCE ALBERT: I think she is now, yes.

KING: Is the concentration on the children?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. She's made that very clear.

KING: What do you have? A nephew, niece, both?

PRINCE ALBERT: I have -- Well, in total, I have two nieces and five nephews. So we have our hands full.

KING: And how's Stephanie doing?

PRINCE ALBERT: Stephanie is doing great. She's also busy being a mom, and she's done incredibly well with that. And it's hard for her to raise kids on her own.

KING: Are they maturing? They used to make a lot of jokes how the kids were just kind of -- Your sisters were just kind of off the wall.

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, you know, like any other girls their age, they like to have fun, they like to, you know, go out and be with friends. I don't know if they have extreme, wild behavior, but it's just that they were in the spotlight more than others. And so whatever they did would be picked up by the press and by public opinion.

KING: Of course, your sister, Stephanie, had to face the embarrassment of a husband who was photographed with other people. That must be...

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, it was.

KING: ... a tragic thing to see.

PRINCE ALBERT: It was a very, very difficult moment.

KING: Are they close to their father?

PRINCE ALBERT: The kids?

KING: The girls.

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, yeah, yeah. I mean, Caroline is not in Monaco all the time, so we see her, you know, pretty regularly.

KING: Where does she live?

PRINCE ALBERT: She lives out in the Excelon Provence (ph), which is about two hours away in a little village called San Amee (ph). And then Stephanie lives in Monaco, but she also has another summer home outside of Monaco, so she's there more than Caroline is. But...

KING: I want to talk about Monaco. Do you expect them both to remarry?

PRINCE ALBERT: Eventually, yes.

KING: You realize, Your Highness, there's a great deal of interest in you, obviously.

PRINCE ALBERT: I don't know why.

KING: Sole male heir to a major place in the world that's very famous. And there are obvious questions, so we'll -- They're none of my business, but what -- It's television.

PRINCE ALBERT: Go ahead.

KING: Why have you never wed?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, because, Larry, (a) I've never felt ready; (b) I was busy doing other things; and (c) I was enjoying being a bachelor.

KING: Ever come close?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, a couple of times, about 10 years ago. But...

KING: Would you imagine from a lady's standpoint -- You're tough to date because if you get real interested, you're on your way to a totally changed life. Not like an insurance guy. Are you conscious of that, that when you do date people, that...

PRINCE ALBERT: I've nothing against insurance guys...

KING: No, but I mean, their life is going to be...

PRINCE ALBERT: I know, I know, obviously. And that's what has scared a few of them away was they came to Monaco and they saw what was going on, and they saw the kind of lifestyle and public life that is mine and that was going to be ahead, and kind of got cold feet. And I can understand that.

KING: And there's almost nothing you can do about that, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: I mean, what are you going to say? "This ain't my life. It is my life."

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: Having grown up in a happy family, seeing parents happy, does that make you long for something like a binding relationship? I mean, do you want to meet somebody tomorrow?

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, yeah. No, and I feel, you know, I'm getting in that time zone where, you know, the clock is ticking and I'd like to have kids, and I'd like to have a family, and I'd like to, you know, not be a washed out dad that can't play with his kids. So it will happen.

KING: Is there a sense -- Maybe the Princess Di thing brought it to a head. Did you know her, by the way?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes, I did meet her a couple of times.

KING: About tragedy and royalty, do you buy any of that, that kind of hangs around?

PRINCE ALBERT: No, I don't really. I mean, you know, tragedy can strike any family.

KING: But it seems to -- You know, you draw a line -- The British have had so much of it. She married into it and had the tragedy, and now the children and the children face enormous dilemmas.

PRINCE ALBERT: That's because there's such a demand by the press for those kinds of stories, I guess. So they kind of force the spotlight on you, or on any prominent family, and they, you know, they try to dig up whatever they can. And fortunately, I try to maintain some sort of private life up until now, and I have been able to escape at certain times the spotlight.

KING: Well, what do you do? You're a prince. You're heir to the throne. You meet Barbara Jones. You like Barbara. First of all, how do you meet her? The ski resort maybe, or a...

PRINCE ALBERT: A party.

KING: A party. OK, "Barbara, I like you very much. Would you like to have dinner?"

"Yes. Call me."

You call her. You go to a regular restaurant?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Drive a car.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes. I have two different cars.

KING: Pick her up, go to eat.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Now, do people start saying, "The prince is out. What about him?"

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, it depends on what kind of an evening I want to have. If I want to be exposed to other friends, then I go to certain places. If I want to be alone with her, then I have places that I can go to that...

KING: But you have to be thinking all the time about, "Where will I"...

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, you know, you...

KING: Unlike the regular guy says, "Let's go down to the corner."

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, I know. Well, you kind of develop that over years. You have this, you know, this secret agent sixth sense, and nowhere to hide, nowhere to go. I know the itinerary. But it's not easy to do, but that's the price you have to pay if you want your privacy. KING: More on the saga of Prince Albert of Monaco. There's a lot of duties, and he's also an adventuresome sort sportswise. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Why isn't your father King Ranier?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, because Monaco is a principality, Larry, and so therefore the title of prince, which was taken back in the 17th century by Prince Henry III (ph) -- the II, sorry, made it so that Monaco was recognized as a principality by the king of France.

KING: So principalities have princes and not kings.

PRINCE ALBERT: That's right.

KING: But it's the oldest in Europe, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: We celebrated last year our 700 years. We are the oldest -- We're not the oldest in the world, but certainly the oldest dynasty in Europe.

KING: And you are the sole male heir to that throne. You have two sisters.

PRINCE ALBERT: I have two sisters.

KING: Is it automatic that you become prince?

PRINCE ALBERT: That is how the line of succession goes, but should anything happen to me, they can go through my sister, Caroline, or Stephanie, depending on who is the oldest and go through her children.

KING: And their title would be princess?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: As your mother was a princess by marrying a prince.

PRINCE ALBERT: That's right.

KING: What's -- There's so much to talk about. What is it like, really, to be a prince?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, you know...

KING: What's life like?

PRINCE ALBERT: I think the positives outshine the negatives, but there are some negative points, obviously, as anyone in the public finds as you know, Larry. You know, you're lauded, you're constantly on the go and kind of being pushed around by different people and scrutinized by the press. But you have tremendous opportunities, tremendous opportunities to do well for my country, to do well for different organizations around the world, to provide some form of leadership, and to meet incredible people and visit incredible places.

KING: Were you at a fairly young age aware of responsibility? I mean, does that put on you, you are a prince?

PRINCE ALBERT: I've been asked this a few times, and I can't really say if there was a specific time where I realized what was going on and what was happening, but it was at a pretty early age when my parents sort of made me understand that we're not an ordinary family.

KING: Now, is that a given, that you get this post? Is that...

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, I assume that...

KING: I mean, could your father, let's say...

PRINCE ALBERT: God forbid should anything go wrong.

KING: ... if he got mad at you one day and resign and make one of your sisters princess?

PRINCE ALBERT: He can still do that if he so desires, but nothing is indicated that I will not be his successor.

KING: And, obviously, you want it someday.

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, I'm just saying...

KING: I mean, it seems obvious to me that you feel responsibility, that you'd like to lead your place of your birth, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, yes. I've been, you know, sort of groomed for this since early on, and the inevitability has never escaped me, and I'm not going to shy away from my duties.

KING: True or false? That back 700 years ago, one of your forefathers dropped some girl and he was supposed to be with her and he wasn't, and she put the Grimaldi curse on this, and bad things have happened ever since? Explain the story to someone who is not sure he knows what he's talking about.

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, I'm not sure of the story myself, because I've always tried to -- I guess my family has, too. We've always tried to play down this, and people bring it up every once in a while that there is a curse. But I've never really studied it.

KING: Your father ever talk about it?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: No?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: Do they teach it in the history books in Monaco. PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: No. So people don't go around saying, if something bad happens, and bad things have happened, "Grimaldi's at it again"?

PRINCE ALBERT: No. It's just -- I mean, when anything tragic happens to us, like my mother's death, obviously that came up and, "Oh, this is the curse of the Grimaldis, and they can never be a happy family, and there's always going to be something wrong." And I just laugh at it.

KING: Our guest is Prince Albert. He is the Serene Highness, His Serene Highness, the Crown Prince of Monaco. This is LARRY KING LIVE. Lots more. Don't go away.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "TO CATCH A THIEF")

KELLY: Lovely day. Have you ever seen anyplace in the world more beautiful? Just look at the colors of the sea and down there in the sky, little pink and green buildings on the hill. (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: A terrific scene from a very good movie, and according to Hollywood legend, while filming that scene, Grace Kelly looked down the cliff and asked, "who owned the gardens below?" She was told they belonged to Prince Rainier, and two years later, she married him in a dazzling ceremony.

Tonight, 20 years after her death, we're showing you our interview with her only son and heir to the throne, Prince Albert of Monaco.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

KING: Talk a little bit about Monaco. What's it like to live in -- How big is Monaco?

PRINCE ALBERT: Monaco is 2-1/2 square miles.

KING: Two-and-a-half square miles.

PRINCE ALBERT: Half of...

KING: A blip.

PRINCE ALBERT: Like half of Central Park in New York City. But we've got a lot crammed into that small space.

KING: Do you have a beach?

PRINCE ALBERT: We have some beachfront that is manmade, because we're right at the tip of the Southern French Alps, so...

KING: What's the weather like?

PRINCE ALBERT: It's very mild.

KING: Year round?

PRINCE ALBERT: I would compare it to California. We do have snow up in the mountains above and it has snowed in Monaco, but very infrequently.

KING: There is, is there not, for the size of your country, great interest in your country around the world?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, you know, someone said that the prestige of Monaco cannot be equated to its size or its size cannot explain the aura it has around the world. And I think that's very true.

KING: It's magic.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: You know, you think of it as a paradise of some sort, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, you know. Some friends who come to visit Monaco, when they leave, they say, "Oh, it's time to go back to the real world." I appreciate when they say that, but on the other hand, we're not only a dreamlike world. I mean, we have our problems just like any other community has, and we are a working place, and we are a place that has an economic reality. But if we can offer a pleasant atmosphere for our visitors and for people who want to come work there, then that's all the better.

KING: Do the people there, are they your subjects? I guess there's no other way to... But do they feel French?

PRINCE ALBERT: Monaco is largely under the French culture. You know, we are very close to Italy as well. And we have a lot of Italians living in Monaco. But we have -- Funny enough, Monaco's a very cosmopolitan place now. We have 130 different nationalities, which a lot of people don't know about. But we are very close to France. Our ties with France extend beyond just the political and economic sphere. Culturally, it is very -- We are very close to France.

KING: Any big crime problem in Monaco?

PRINCE ALBERT: No. In fact, Monaco is one of the safest places in Europe. I don't dare say the world, but we have very little crime. In fact, that's one of our more -- The last actual murder crime was about 10 years ago.

KING: In lives of royalty, we hear about arrangements. Did your father ever try to arrange a situation where you should be the -- There was a rumor, I think, about Claudia Schiffer that he had arranged for you and her to be a couple and you should marry her.

PRINCE ALBERT: That was never the case. Well, he isn't into matchmaking, and he never tried to do that. He's always let me make my own choices, and he trusts that I will make a good...

KING: Have you dated well-known women?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: I don't read tabloids, so. You have?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Does that focus more attention, though, when you do that?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, obviously, it's harder to be able to go off and do something privately, obviously. And so...

KING: And both of you are not private.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. So that's probably why I haven't done a whole lot of that.

KING: All right, now you're in a movie?

PRINCE ALBERT: I did -- I had a small part in a movie, yeah, called "One Man's Hero."

KING: Not out in America yet, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: It hasn't come out yet. There was talk about it going straight to video, which isn't always a very good sign. But I did see the movie. I thought it was OK.

KING: Who did you play?

PRINCE ALBERT: This -- Well, I just want to say how it came about. It was just a thing with friends and we kind of joked about it. I'd always wanted to do like a little cameo, so this was just the opportunity. And it came out. But actually, the story was pretty nice. It's a true story of the son, Petruchio's (ph) regiment, so these Irish immigrants that had immigrated to the U.S. during the Mexican-American War, and because they felt they were badly treated, had defected from the U.S. Army to the Mexican Army. The U.S. Army went after them and had a mock trial, and eventually hung them for...

KING: And who do you play?

PRINCE ALBERT: So I play one James Kelly, who is...

KING: Interesting choice of name, is it not?

PRINCE ALBERT: And so I'm part of this gun crew. And, I mean, it's a very short scene with Tom Berenger as the leading actor there.

KING: Did you enjoy it? PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, I thought it was fun. It only took me a day, but it was fun. I'd been on movie sets before, obviously, but it was fun to be actually part of it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TOM BERENGER, ACTOR: Sergeant Daly (ph) here informs me that one of you have experience in artillery.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes, sir. I'll come up here, James Kelly. Yes, sir, I was with Her Majesty's Roayl Artillery, sir.

BERENGER: Oh, good experience that. However, we have no royals here now.

PRINCE ALBERT: No, sir.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Is there a lot of filming, by the way, in Monaco?

PRINCE ALBERT: There are occasionally. I'd say regularly, movies are being shot in Monaco, yes.

KING: Now, you represent Monaco at the U.N. You are its like...

PRINCE ALBERT: I'm the head of the delegation to the United Nations, and so I come here every year for the General Assembly for a few days. And I am the designated spokesperson...

KING: Do they take you seriously at the U.N. when you're small?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, you know, it's funny you should say that, because a few years ago, I was bothered by an article that came out in a Chicago paper saying, "Why are they letting all these small countries in the U.N.? They're taking up space. There are going to be a lot more motorcades of diplomats, and it's going to disrupt..."

We're not the only small country there, but I think we have the right to be there like any other nations, and we don't take up a lot of space. In fact, I've often walked from the offices of our delegation to the general assembly hall, so there are no traffic problems for us.

KING: Your flag is a flag, is recognized as any other flag. It deserves to fly there.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, yeah. And this has been incredible for us because it was a recognition by the international community that we were a member of that community. And for a small country, that's very important.

KING: We'll be back with more of Prince Albert on LARRY KING LIVE. Don't go away.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) KING: We're back. You know, we mentioned about France and part of France. When Hitler occupied France, what happened to Monaco?

PRINCE ALBERT: Monaco was also occupied.

KING: Nazi troops were there?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes. Monaco was bombarded by the allies, because they thought that the Germans -- Well, first that the Italians had a submarine base, and then when they disappeared in the latter part of the war, the allies thought that the harbor, Monaco was a submarine base. And so they dropped a few shells on us.

KING: Wow. See, we never hear about that.

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: Your father's 50 years now, huh?

PRINCE ALBERT: Next year, my father will he his jubilee, his 50th year of reign.

KING: His father died 50 years ago?

PRINCE ALBERT: He succeeded from his grandfather, Prince Louis II.

KING: How old is he now?

PRINCE ALBERT: He is 75.

KING: Where does the clock go? That dashing young guy is 75?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: What's planned in Monaco for the big 5-0 right before the millennium?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, well, we have -- We only have really one day of official celebration that will be May 9. But there will be other events all through the year, especially through the summer and through September.

KING: Is he excited?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: How does he feel?

PRINCE ALBERT: You know...

KING: Not many people go 50 years with that kind of a job.

PRINCE ALBERT: No, no. In fact, I think only the king of Thailand celebrated his jubilee last year, too. But I don't know of any monarch who has achieved that. KING: Is he upbeat about it? Does he...

PRINCE ALBERT: You know, he tries to downplay it. He didn't want to -- He's the one who said that he only wanted the minimum amount of celebration. I mean, obviously, if there are any spontaneous events that come out, he will be very touched by it. But he didn't want to do such a big fuss about it.

KING: We discussed this succession earlier. There are some rumors, they tell me, in Monaco that in that May date, he may hand it over to you. Have you heard that?

PRINCE ALBERT: We have not discussed this, and we have not planned this.

KING: And you'd be happy if it did and happy if it didn't?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, yeah. I'm very happy right now just to be working very closely with him. I think we form a good team. I'm very close to him and enjoy that relationship with him. Whenever the time is right and whenever we feel jointly that circumstances are such that -- He's always said he wanted a very smooth transition, and I totally agree with him. So when we feel that the time is right, that's when it's going to happen.

KING: Do you feel pressure?

PRINCE ALBERT: Not from my family, so much but people from the outside obviously, you know, say...

KING: When are you going to...

PRINCE ALBERT: "Come on. When is it going to happen?" So I, you know, I learned to -- and sports has helped me with that.

KING: Because you win and lose.

PRINCE ALBERT: Learn to cope with that kind of pressure.

KING: That's the best thing about sports, right? In other words, you could have pressure and you don't win all the time.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: And princes can lose and commoners can win.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: Many young royals like sports, get involved in sports. We think of Prince Charles and polo and such. You are a bobsledder. In fact, you're on an Olympic bobsled...

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: What's the key to the good bobsledder other than hanging on? PRINCE ALBERT: Well, you have to have some sort of athletic ability.

KING: Is it important who's in front and who's behind?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. I'm the driver, so I'm the one who's in front.

KING: You're in front.

PRINCE ALBERT: But obviously, you have to pick your crew very carefully. You look for guys that are big and strong and fast.

KING: Fast because they have to run into it, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, it's a running start, then we all jump in. Obviously, the one who drives has to jump in first, get those ropes, and to try to steer the sled down the course.

KING: America's used some football players to run because of their speed and agility because it's as important as how -- The time begins when you start to go, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. As I said, it's a running start, but the time cell is probably maybe eight feet away from the actual block where you start off from.

KING: Any injuries?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: Never been injured in bobsledding?

PRINCE ALBERT: Very, very minor injuries.

KING: I always thought maybe sprained...

PRINCE ALBERT: Not even that. Just couple of bruises and...

KING: It looks like it's thrilling.

PRINCE ALBERT: It's the greatest thrill I've ever experienced. It's been an incredible adventure for me, and...

KING: Do you know how fast you're going?

PRINCE ALBERT: On some tracks, you know, I've reached 90 miles an hour, which is pretty good for...

KING: On ice, you mean.

PRINCE ALBERT: And you're pretty low to the ground and you got these walls on either side, so it heightens the speed sensation.

KING: You also play soccer.

PRINCE ALBERT: I play soccer.

KING: On what team?

PRINCE ALBERT: I have a team of friends.

KING: Oh, regular weekend soccer.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. I used to play in my youth. I used to play for AS Monaco, for the, you know, Monaco football team.

KING: Why do kids love that game? I mean, we as Americans haven't bought it yet, although they drew 58,000 for the professional championship game in L.A.

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, yeah.

KING: But every kid in America loves it. Why do you love playing it?

PRINCE ALBERT: I don't know. I guess it's just the thrill of kicking a ball around. I don't know. It's...

KING: Well, you can be big or small, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. And it's easier to play. You know, you just have to put two...

KING: Put a ball down and...

PRINCE ALBERT: And then use two pieces of wood to do the post or even two little stumps or whatever, and it's easy to get a group of people around. And it's just -- I don't know. It's just an incredible thrill to be able to run around and kick that ball.

KING: Would you say that you'd like to remain active sportswise?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes. You know, and once you've gotten into a rhythm of working out and of doing some athletic activity, it's hard to let go.

KING: You're also, for want of a better term, spokesperson for your country, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yes.

KING: Is that part of the duty of royalty, you think, that they are -- I don't mean this in a slight way. I mean, they are in public relations.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. And I think it's a normal role for anyone in an position of leadership. I've assumed that role with great interest and I think it's a normal part of our activity.

KING: A lot of travel?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, yeah. KING: Get used to that? Goes with the territory?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. Well, I enjoy traveling. You know, when it happens, on a very speedily and very regular basis, then it does -- You do get used to it. It does get a little tiring at the end of the year, but...

KING: Are you a fan of your mother's country land? Do you like the United States?

PRINCE ALBERT: I love the U.S. and I spent a lot of time here as a kid, and I was at school here. I went to Amherst College, and I've spent a lot of time here since then. I come maybe four, five times a year.

KING: Do you know Doug Swift?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: He was a good friend of mine. First and only Amherst player to play in the NFL.

PRINCE ALBERT: No, there were several others like Sean Clancy.

KING: Oh, yeah, that's right. But Doug, he was a walk-on. He's a doctor now.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, that's what I hear. He was right before my time that I saw him and I hadn't heard a lot about him.

KING: Good guy. We'll be back with our remaining moments with Prince Albert after this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: We're back with our remaining moments with Prince Albert of Monaco. It's been a delight meeting him, and we have looked forward to do this, and our expectations have been met.

What's the worst thing about being a prince?

PRINCE ALBERT: I guess it's trying to cope with a lot of different situations at once, and a lot of different people trying to grab you and pull you in different directions for their own interests. And it's trying to keep a steady line and trying to do as much as you can to make everybody happy, but still try to focus on what you're supposed to do.

KING: We heard about the worst. What's the best part about being Prince Albert?

PRINCE ALBERT: Well, if you want me to say the best part is being on your show, I would, but...

KING: It would rank high. Lot of jokes about the pipe tobacco gone, right. That's gone now. PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, I...

KING: You still hear that, Prince Albert...

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, I still hear that occasionally.

KING: You have Prince Albert in a can, you light him up.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: Best part?

PRINCE ALBERT: Best part is meeting incredible people, different heads of state, different celebrities, having access to visiting research centers. And it's just incredible. I enjoy that part.

KING: Do you get used to wealth? By used to it, I mean, where it becomes where you don't think of it?

PRINCE ALBERT: You don't think of it, but I, you know, I think of myself as being very flexible and being able to adapt to different kinds of situations, so I don't have extraordinary means, and I don't have extraordinary tastes. I don't need to, you know, be on a yacht or to be in very expensive hotels. I can...

KING: I think it may eliminate pressure, but it has nothing to do with happiness, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: Your pin. What is that?

PRINCE ALBERT: Oh, that's just a regular Monaco pin. It has a crown on it, but it doesn't mean that I'm the only one who...

KING: It doesn't mean, "I'm prince. I'm prince. See me."

PRINCE ALBERT: In fact, if you would like it, I would be delighted to present this to you.

KING: You're kidding?

PRINCE ALBERT: No.

KING: Delighted. King gets a crown. I'll put it on the suspenders with this. You sure this is all right?

PRINCE ALBERT: It's fine.

KING: I'm not breaking some...

PRINCE ALBERT: It looks good on those suspenders, too.

KING: Hey. What are your goals?

PRINCE ALBERT: My goals are to lead my country as best I can, to try to do good around me, to keep up this momentum that my country is on or has been on for the last several decades, and to be a member of the national community and to try to do good.

I have a very interesting thing, and it kind of equates to what I think I'm trying to do. I have a Native American name. I was made an honorary member of the Lakota (ph) Nation. And in that ceremony, they gave me a name, and it's -- In the Lakota language, it's Oyate Hakolakopi (ph), which means "Friends of all Nations." And I hope that my country can be friends of all nations.

KING: Boy, what an interesting thing. I bet that's a source of great pride. Do you think your mother would be...

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, this was done only a few years ago, so she wasn't aware of this. But...

KING: Is she buried in Monaco?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah.

KING: You ever go to the grave?

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah, we go there once a year.

KING: Her presence still felt? She was such a commanding person.

PRINCE ALBERT: Yeah. I mean, obviously, you know. And it's incredible to see how she touched the lives of so many people around her.

KING: They loved her in Monaco, right?

PRINCE ALBERT: They loved her in Monaco, but they loved her around the world. And when she died, we had calls from Australia, from Asia, from...

KING: It's been an honor meeting you, Your Highness.

PRINCE ALBERT: Thank you very much.

KING: Great pleasure. Prince Albert -- thanks for this. You sure it's...

PRINCE ALBERT: It's fine.

KING: Prince Albert of Monaco, His Serene Highness.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

KING: Princess Grace's mystique endures 20 years after her death. She remains an alluring, intriguing figure. We wish her family well on this sad anniversary. Thanks for watching.

We'll be back live tomorrow night. Until then, good night.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com



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