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CNN LARRY KING LIVE

Interview With James Hewitt, Princess Di's Former Lover

Aired September 26, 2003 - 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, exclusive, Princess Diana's former lover, James Hewitt, in his first interview since he sparked a royal uproar with kiss-and-tell stories and a British TV documentary. He's here for the hour. We'll take your calls. Princess Di's ex-lover, James Hewitt, is next on LARRY KING LIVE.
It's a pleasure to welcome James Hewitt back to this program. He was last with us in January. He's the recipient of many intimate letters from Princess Di. We'll talk about that later. He's a former British army officer, was the focus of a very controversial documentary, "Confessions of a Cad." It was broadcast in Britain on July 4. And we're going to talk about that later, too. He recently appeared on British reality TV, a sports competition called "The Games," and apparently, after a lot of bad PR, got a lot of good press for "The Games." What was "The Games"?

JAMES HEWITT, PRINCESS DIANA'S LOVER 1986-91: It was funny seeing Richard Quest talk about reality television, but that's what it was.

KING: What was the concept?

HEWITT: The concept was -- basically, there were 10 of us trained for two months in sports, different disciplines. And then we were pitted against each other over the course of five days. We lived in the village together, like an Olympic village. So there were cameras on all the time. It was live television.

KING: What sports?

HEWITT: I had to do diving from a diving board, vaulting...

KING: We're seeing scenes of...

HEWITT: Oh, right. Oh, right. You know, this is the -- this is the...

KING: The bunk?

HEWITT: This is the dormitory where we all stayed. Diving, vaulting, sprinting, long jump, curling. Have you ever heard of that?

KING: I've heard of curling. I've seen curling in the Olympics. How did you do?

HEWITT: And weight lifting. Not too bad. Not too bad. I came second with a silver medal, so not bad for (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

KING: I'm told that when it started, you did all the training. Cameras showed you during the training. And then you originally were booed or something, and then people got to like you over the -- what happened?

HEWITT: Well, there was a certain amount of negativity, I think, to begin with, people having heard things or seen things before. And towards the end, I think I got quite a bit -- quite a bit of support, yes.

KING: You had fun?

HEWITT: Great fun. It was very good.

KING: How did they...

HEWITT: It's a program that should come here, I think. It's positive. I mean, unlike the other, sort of...

KING: You don't eat rats.

HEWITT: Don't have to do that sort of thing, "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here." So it had a very much more positive effect on everybody.

KING: Is it a hit show?

HEWITT: It was in England. I think it's going to be sold around the world.

KING: How did they get you to do it?

HEWITT: They rang up and said would I be interested in taking part. It's for charity. It was a good cause. And I didn't have a great deal else on at the time, so I thought, get myself fit and do something that's going to be of benefit.

KING: What was the toughest sport for you?

HEWITT: I suppose it was the sprinting, 100 meters. It was difficult to try and get quicker than 13 seconds, which is what Harvey, the winner, did it in something like. It's an amazing time, like 11 seconds.

KING: OK. For an amateur, it's unbelievable.

HEWITT: Yes, it's very good.

KING: That's where you did poorest?

HEWITT: Well, I came third or fourth.

KING: What were you the best in?

HEWITT: The diving and... KING: Are you a swimmer?

HEWITT: Yes, I enjoy that. But the diving and the weight lifting, I think, I didn't do too badly.

KING: Did you see a chance in doing this that this would be a good opportunity for you to, for want of a better term, rehabilitate? I mean, you get bad press...

HEWITT: Well, it's difficult -- well, I don't know, so let's not repeat that too much.

KING: You got so much bad press.

HEWITT: Yes, I did. And I face up to that and I accept that. And I've tried to -- of course, I've tried to make a difference and for people to be able to see the real me. And I think this has worked, in that case. It wasn't the reason for doing it.

KING: The reason was not...

(CROSSTALK)

HEWITT: It seemed to have had very good effects, which I'm very pleased about. I can't -- I can't suggest I'm not.

KING: The reason for doing it, then, was what?

HEWITT: Well, at I say, I mean, it was for charity, primarily, and the fact that I couldn't think of an excuse not to do it.

(CROSSTALK)

HEWITT: And it was going to get me -- you know, stop me drinking, and I got fit. And every effect was positive. I'd been approached to go on "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here" and other reality programs. But I believed in the positiveness of this, and I think it's done very well.

KING: How do you earn a living?

HEWITT: I have investments, and I have a pension. And...

KING: From the army?

HEWITT: ... it's meager, but I get by. Yes.

KING: So in other words, you are -- are you considered, like -- they don't -- people don't want to hire you?

HEWITT: I don't think so, Larry. I mean...

KING: What -- what...

(CROSSTALK) KING: I mean, I'm not -- I'm not -- I don't live there. Not a very -- I know the story that you -- you know, you had this relationship. You had these letters. But why are people so up against you?

HEWITT: Well, I think -- if we're getting serious for a minute, I think that I've been given a pretty rough time by the tabloid media in England, and they like to paint people either very good or very badly.

KING: Did you bring it on yourself, in some ways, do you think?

HEWITT: I will accept responsibility for the bits that I've done wrong, yes, of course. I'm not going to say that, you know, I'm completely without blame. But that's not to say that other people aren't, either. And by that I mean the ridiculous and untrue press...

KING: How did you...

(CROSSTALK)

HEWITT: And you mentioned the letters. And I mean -- and I don't like to -- you know, it pains me to talk about it and -- but I would like to say that had they not been stolen from my residence in Devon by an editor of a British tabloid paper, they wouldn't be in the public domain. And this is what, you know, gets to me sometimes...

KING: Well, I think they...

HEWITT: ... that people, you know, have ideas about what I should do with my own property.

KING: There were reports, though, that you were offered 600,000 pounds -- about $983,000 -- for the letters. Was that true? And did you consider selling them?

HEWITT: I think I realize which reports you're referring to. And really, that's old history, and that was dealt with at the time. The man who said he was interested wasn't what he said he was.

KING: Oh.

HEWITT: And -- and basically, as far as I'm concerned, it's history. And then that's where...

KING: Are they in your possession now?

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: And that's where they will remain?

HEWITT: That is correct.

KING: Did you ever think of donating them to a museum or something?

HEWITT: Well, I...

KING: They are history.

HEWITT: They are...

KING: Private and...

HEWITT: They're private. They're my property. And you know, I hadn't really considered -- well, it's difficult to know. I mean, you know, they're my property and that's it. And I won't be drawn, really, any further on it.

KING: You have every right to them.

Our guest is James Hewitt. We're going to go to break. We'll be taking a lot of calls for James tonight. And as we go to break, watch this from "The Games."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP - "THE GAME")

HEWITT: What's happened?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

HEWITT: You've got hurdles, not hammer. You've got long legs. You just...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Doesn't matter. Yes, it's all about (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

HEWITT: Are you supple?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.

HEWITT: Can you put your legs behind your head?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, that's not -- What? No. No.

HEWITT: I used to be able to do that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Really?

HEWITT: Yes.

I met a Miss Great Britain and a Miss England and a Miss Wales, but never a Miss World. They should have more of them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: We're back with James Hewitt. In January, I interviewed Diana's former butler, Paul Burrell. And in this clip, he talked about the love letters of Princess Di and Mr. Hewitt. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP - January 15, 2003)

PAUL BURRELL, CLEARED OF THEFT FROM DIANA'S ESTATE: James came to Kensington Palace to collect them because they were his property. And he came into the office, and I can remember him coming in. And he looked at me. His eyes were full of tears. And he said, Paul, you know that I would never sell those letters. You know that I would never betray the princess. He said that to me. He said that in front of me. So what's the truth? I mean, he told you that he would sell the letters. He's changed his mind. He obviously needed the money.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Is that just -- is that OK, by the way? Did you just change your mind?

HEWITT: I think he's got it slightly wrong.

KING: Clarify it. Good. I hate things wrong.

HEWITT: Well, no, I did go and get my property from Kensington Palace. It was being kept from me. I did meet him there and I did shake his hand. And I said, This is not of my making. And he said, I know. And that was all the conversation we had.

KING: So you never said anything about selling, not selling?

HEWITT: No.

KING: Were you surprised when he said that?

HEWITT: That's the first time I've seen that, actually.

KING: Oh.

HEWITT: But little surprises me now.

KING: With all that's happened to you, are you almost immune to surprises?

HEWITT: I think it's...

KING: Even though...

HEWITT: Yes. I mean, yes, I am, I think. Very little surprises me.

KING: You were offered -- you told us after your last appearance on this show, you were offered a job by -- tell me about it -- by Fox?

HEWITT: Yes. Shortly after I appeared in January here, I was approached by Fox to be a war correspondent for...

KING: For the war in Iraq.

HEWITT: Yes. And after brief negotiations, I accepted, signed a contract. And they, sadly, reneged on it. So I was unable to go out and do that.

KING: Why did they renege? Did they give you a reason? HEWITT: Well, we're -- there's -- I'm going to be -- it's going to court, so...

KING: Oh, you're suing?

HEWITT: ... I really can't -- yes, I'm suing. So I suppose I shouldn't really speak about it.

KING: Had you planned to go to Iraq? Was that the plan.

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: You would go and cover the war for them.

HEWITT: Exactly.

KING: As the troops went in, you would cover it.

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: You fought in a war, didn't you?

HEWITT: I was in the first Gulf war, in 1991, yes.

KING: What were your duties?

HEWITT: I had a squadron of tanks, 14 tanks and about 120 men. And we advanced -- we were the first tanks advanced into -- from Saudi Arabia into Iraq, and then back into Kuwait to liberate Kuwait.

KING: As you look back, do you think they should have gone all the way then?

HEWITT: That's a difficult one. I think we -- I mean, we did what we set out to do, which was to liberate Kuwait. And you know, it wasn't in our remit, so to speak, to do anything other than that. And I think that was probably the right decision at the time.

KING: When you went to war, your relationship had ended, right? Princess (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

HEWITT: Yes, really.

KING: I mean, was it over, or did you keep in touch?

HEWITT: Well, we kept in touch, but -- yes. I mean, it's difficult when you're so far away.

KING: She must have been concerned.

HEWITT: Yes (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

KING: All right, we're going -- we're going to discuss a little bit about the cad thing. He wasn't responsible for it. Why do they call it "Confessions of a Cad"?

HEWITT: Well, I...

KING: Was it you confessing?

HEWITT: Well, no. I mean, I don't know. I mean, the whole thing has turned out to be not what it was meant to be.

KING: All right, I want to see just two short things from it and get his comments. In this clip from the documentary which aired on Britain's Channel 4 this summer, he's asked how he felt Prince Charles viewed Diana's affair with him. Let's watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP - "CONFESSIONS OF A CAD")

HEWITT: I think he was probably grateful that someone was looking after his wife when he was shagging Camilla Parker Bowles. Don't you?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: That's very honest response.

HEWITT: Well, I'd prefer not to have come over like that. I think it was...

KING: Didn't you sense it when they were taping it, that it would...

HEWITT: Well, I mean, the difficulty there is that if you allow a team into your life for seven months, they're going to film an awful lot and...

KING: So it was a mistake.

HEWITT: Yes, it was a mistake. Yes.

KING: When you watch...

HEWITT: It was a mistake to do it, yes.

KING: Yes, that's what I mean. What was it like for you to watch it?

HEWITT: It wasn't very nice because the whole reason for doing it wasn't going to -- it wasn't going to happen. It was just more stuff being churned out, old-hat stuff that...

(CROSSTALK)

KING: Did they tell -- what they tell you is different from what happened?

HEWITT: That's correct.

KING: Oh.

HEWITT: That is correct. KING: So you...

HEWITT: I mean, you know, the program must be, you know, seen -- you know, I've just got to accept it and apologize and move on.

KING: But you're a bright guy. You must have known that once you give someone seven months of attention and they get the edit rights, they're going to do with it as they wish.

HEWITT: I was promised all sorts of things, and none of the promises were, you know...

KING: Is there a lawsuit there, too?

HEWITT: There should be, but I can't...

KING: One other clip. In this clip, "Confessions of a Cad," which aired on Britain's Channel 4, he's asked about his love life exploits. Let's watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP - "CONFESSIONS OF A CAD")

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How many women have you had?

HEWITT: This week? This year?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you normally score in a year?

HEWITT: More than the England cricket team.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Now, you knew that answering that way, it would have to make you look unflattering.

HEWITT: It did, didn't it!

KING: Yes. I mean, I'm just -- I mean...

HEWITT: I mean, yes. As I've said, it's very difficult...

KING: In retrospect, why did you do that?

HEWITT: I thought a decent program could be made and produced, and it wasn't. I mean, it's as simple as that.

KING: Are you now mistrustful of media in general? Because here tonight, you're clearing some things up. You're being honest and...

HEWITT: Well, I think live television is different.

KING: Oh, yes. You can't edit.

HEWITT: You can't edit. I mean, anybody would be -- you could do it to anybody. You can spin them either way.

KING: Correct. If you have an agenda.

HEWITT: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) been with them if you have an agenda. And their agenda was obviously not...

KING: That's not what they told you it was.

HEWITT: No.

KING: In fact, the title -- you couldn't have agreed to the title, "Confessions of a Cad."

HEWITT: No, I didn't.

KING: So that had to shock you when you heard that advertised. You knew you were in trouble.

HEWITT: Yes, that's correct.

KING: How did the press react to this?

HEWITT: I think probably they went over the top a bit. But you know, as I've said, you know, it was a mistake, and I've tried to draw a line under that and move on.

KING: Why don't you move or live somewhere else, start life differently and get out of that kind of -- I mean, you could be a media person anywhere. Why...

HEWITT: You know, I like living in London. Things have moved on. Things are positive now. I'm grateful for that. And sometimes, things that you've done in the past revisit you. I -- I...

KING: All right.

HEWITT: And I'm trying to clear it up. I do apologize for that. It was a mistake. But let's move on.

KING: OK. I'm going to take a break and ask you about life now, what you're doing, what you contemplate doing. And then at the bottom of the hour, we'll take your phone calls. Our guest is James Hewitt. This is LARRY KING LIVE.

Tomorrow night -- I love saying this -- Luciano Pavarotti will be here -- Luciano Pavarotti will be with us for the hour. Sunday night, Carol Burnett, and Monday night, a live hour with Neil Diamond. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: We're back with James Hewitt. All right, what is life like now? Tell us about what you do, what your days are like. What are you doing (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

HEWITT: Well, I mean, since "The Games," which we mentioned earlier on, I think life has changed dramatically for me. I feel very much more positive. I think -- I feel as I can let go of the past and move on. And I feel that. And you know, I'm optimistic about the future for the first time in a long time.

KING: You still have a lot of friends who were friends then?

HEWITT: Yes. Yes. Absolutely.

KING: Did you lose any friendships over this?

HEWITT: No, not really. No.

KING: So the people who were your pals...

HEWITT: Yes, yes. My friends have stuck by me through thick and thin, and I think, you know, it's what good friendship's about.

KING: Are you dating anyone special?

HEWITT: No, I'm not. No.

KING: Do you want to marry some day?

HEWITT: Yes, I do.

KING: I mean, you may not. There's no -- you don't have to want to marry.

HEWITT: No, I do. I do. I would like that. I would like to settle down and have a family.

KING: Do you have professional goals?

HEWITT: Yes. I mean, I would like to -- I would like to start a career in television, and I think I'll be able to do that. I've had a lot of offers since "The Games," and we're looking at them and trying to select the best ones to take.

KING: Do you have any idea of what you -- particularly you'd like to do?

HEWITT: Travel programs, adventure travel, that type of thing.

KING: Military?

HEWITT: If I was asked to do that, yes, I would do that, something I know a little about. And you know, I was prepared to go and cover the war, and I would like to have done that.

KING: So something where you'd be moving about.

HEWITT: Yes. I like travel. I like meeting people. I get on well with people.

KING: You know, it's interesting that you like a medium that's hurt you so much.

HEWITT: I know. It's very, very strange.

(LAUGHTER)

KING: It's kind of weird. Goes around, comes around.

HEWITT: It is very strange, but life is sometimes like that, I find.

KING: Yes.

HEWITT: I mean, it really is. You know, I think I'd enjoy it.

KING: By the way, what do you think of how things are going in Iraq?

HEWITT: I think that it's a difficult situation, and I think the war was easier to win than the peace. And I think it needs an awful lot of close attention. Yes.

KING: Is Tony Blair's popularity still down?

HEWITT: Yes, I would say so, in England. He's suffering a bit. I think (UNINTELLIGIBLE) sensible to -- it might have been sensible to go in and do the business, but I think people like to be told the truth and -- rather than to be duped into agreeing to do something like go to war.

KING: What do you think about how the two boys have grown up?

HEWITT: I think they've grown up extremely well, and they seem to be very nice.

KING: She'd have been proud.

HEWITT: I would have thought so, yes.

KING: Did you know them when they were young?

HEWITT: Yes, I did.

KING: And did they like -- did you get along? What were they like?

HEWITT: They were charming, charming boys, yes. And I think they've grown up to be charming young men.

KING: You think they will be successful?

HEWITT: Yes. Yes.

KING: Now, in this whole -- as you look back, does it -- you were -- how old are you now, James?

HEWITT: I'm 45.

KING: All right -- that you could live to 120, and in the first paragraph of your obituary, no matter what you may accomplish in life, her name will appear. HEWITT: Oh, right.

KING: Do you just accept that? I mean, do you just -- that's...

HEWITT: Events, if your assertion is -- is...

KING: I'm guessing.

HEWITT: I've got to accept that. I've got to accept that. I can't change it. But as I said, I'd like to move on and -- you know, and not forget the past, but one has to let it rest and to move on.

KING: In other words...

HEWITT: And I'm, you know, prepared to do that.

KING: When someone's in something -- like, we all look at someone and saying -- I mean, Princess Di was so admired and she was beautiful. Many men would have said they'd like to be in your shoes. But when you were in it, you weren't saying, Wow, I'm with a princess, right?

HEWITT: That's correct.

KING: You were caring about someone, right?

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: You weren't looking at it as the public might look at it. You were involved.

HEWITT: I was involved, and when you're so closely involved with something, you see it in a completely different light, of course. I accept that. But you know, for the wonderful times that I've had in the past, I have come to accept what has gone on. I have wonderful memories and want to move on.

KING: Where were you when she died?

HEWITT: I was in Spain.

KING: How did you hear about it?

HEWITT: Somebody telephoned me.

KING: Had to be a devastating blow.

HEWITT: Yes, it was. I was very sad. Very, very sad.

KING: Why -- I'm going to see a clip of this in a second as we go to break. Why did you write that book?

HEWITT: I wrote "War and Love"...

KING: Yes.

HEWITT: ... because a number of things had happened in my life that needed to be addressed.

KING: But you know it would upset her, parts of it would.

HEWITT: Not at all.

KING: You didn't think so?

HEWITT: Not at all. There was nothing in the book to upset anybody, other than the person who stole the letters from me.

KING: As we go to break, in November, 1995, interview with the BBC, Princess Di talked about her relationship with James and how upset she was that he did reveal details in the book. We'll show that clip as we go to break. And when we come back, we'll go to your phone calls for James Hewitt. Don't go away.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP - BBC NOVEMBER, 1995)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Another book that was published recently concerned a Mr. James Hewitt, in which he claimed to have a very close relationship with you from about 1989, I think. What was the nature of your relationship?

PRINCESS DIANA: He was a great friend of mine at a very difficult -- yet another difficult time, and he was always there to support me. And I was absolutely devastated when this book appeared because I trusted him and because, again, I worried about the reaction of my children. And yes, there was factual evidence in the book, but a lot of it was -- comes from another world, didn't equate (ph) to what happened.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you mean?

PRINCESS DIANA: Well, there was a lot of fantasy in that book, and it was very distressing for me that a friend of mine who I had trusted made money out of me. I really minded about that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: We're back with James Hewitt. That clip I ran -- Princess Di was discussing a book -- that was not your book.

HEWITT: That's correct.

KING: Just -- we want to set the record straight.

HEWITT: Thank you.

KING: That was a book by someone else...

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: ...in which quotes were given, right?

HEWITT: That's true.

KING: ...and they may have been misquote. But it was not -- you didn't write a book about your relationship?

HEWITT: That's correct.

KING: All right.

HEWITT: I later wrote a book called "Love and War," which covered certain aspects of my life, but which was basically to answer my critics and to point out, you know, that the fact about who stole the letters and why.

KING: I see.

HEWITT: That's -- that's...

KING: Let's go to calls for James. Normal, Illinois, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry.

KING: Hi.

CALLER: I enjoy your show.

KING: Thank you. What's the question?

CALLER: Mr. Hewitt?

HEWITT: Yes?

CALLER: Were you really in love with Diana?

HEWITT: I was, yes. It was an important relationship.

KING: What was it like when you -- you know, this happens to anybody in this strange situation when someone is married to someone else -- when that feeling started to come over you that, Hey, I'm in love?

HEWITT: It's not an easy -- it's not easy to cope with. But...

KING: Did it happen to both of you at the same time?

HEWITT: I think so, yes.

KING: Yes?

HEWITT: I think so.

KING: Did you ever say to yourself, Boy, I'm treading thin here?

HEWITT: Often.

KING: Hartford, Wisconsin, hello.

CALLER: Hi, James.

HEWITT: Hello.

CALLER: Hello. I was wondering why you and Diana broke up.

KING: Fair question.

HEWITT: That is a fair question.

KING: Yes.

HEWITT: Because -- because it was too difficult to continue a relationship when it became known about, I think.

KING: I mean, Princess Charles (sic) was having a relationship. Eventually, there was a divorce. Why couldn't there have been a divorce and you marry her?

HEWITT: I think because so much had -- you know, so much water passed under the bridge at that stage and it just became too difficult.

KING: Was there ever a time you thought that might happen?

HEWITT: No. I don't think so.

KING: So there was never a time when you said, Look, I love you, you love me, why don't we just come forward with this?

HEWITT: Well, yes. But I mean, you know, gosh. It's a long time ago, you know? And as I've said -- it's something that I know it's in the public (UNINTELLIGIBLE). It's like, you know, I know people are interested.

KING: They're always going to be interested, James. I mean, you'll go on and you could do great things in television, but people are just going to be interested. That's the nature of public interest.

HEWITT: True. But I'm prepared to move on and let it go. I just wish other people were.

KING: Shelbyville, Indiana, hello.

CALLER: Hello, James.

HEWITT: Hello.

CALLER: My question for you is -- do you share my feelings that it's time to let Princess Diana rest in peace.

HEWITT: I do share those feelings. They're very sensible words, yes.

KING: What did you make of all the commotion -- I mean, the incredible world attention at her passing?

HEWITT: It was amazing. I mean, I don't think anybody expected it to be so -- such a huge outpouring of public grief. I think it took everyone by shock.

KING: Obviously, the world cared for her, more than we thought we cared, right? I mean, there was -- the affection was incredible.

HEWITT: I think it was a sort of kick back reaction because there was negative press. And I think people read it, and I think they -- it was a sort of a shared guilt for reading it and for buying the papers and they probably tried to find a way to express that guilt. And the way they did in the public outcry.

KING: Makes sense. Philadelphia, hello.

CALLER: Hello. Major, would you share your thoughts on the Paul Burrell trial?

HEWITT: That would be dangerous, wouldn't it?

KING: Go ahead.

HEWITT: It's -- I didn't really follow it that closely, to be honest. And, you know, the man had no case to answer at the end of it. So I don't really want to comment.

KING: Did he get a bad deal, do you think?

HEWITT: No, I don't think so.

KING: To St. Louis, hello.

CALLER: Good evening, Larry.

KING: Hi.

CALLER: Good evening, Mr. Hewitt.

HEWITT: Hello.

CALLER: Do you have any regrets or remorse about anything regarding the late Princess Diana?

HEWITT: I do regret that the amount of intrusiveness into private life and lives by the -- by the media. And I think that could have been controlled better. I think that is something to be regretted.

But I try not to regret too much. I try to learn from things and move on and be positive.

KING: How did she handle the public attention she got?

HEWITT: I think in the same way, as sort of with a certain stoicism and strength of character to not be beaten by -- by it. And I think that's a pretty good way of doing things.

KING: Of course, Great Britain may have more tabloids than any country, right? HEWITT: Yes, unfortunately. Yes.

KING: I think you set the record.

Oreland, Pennsylvania, hello.

CALLER: Hello.

KING: Yes, go ahead.

CALLER: Who am I talking to?

KING: Larry King. Who are you calling?

CALLER: Oh, I'm calling Larry King.

KING: OK. You got the right number. Go ahead.

CALLER: I would like to know what Mr. Hewitt is doing with the money from the book and from the selling of the letters.

KING: He didn't sell the letters, so let's get that straight, right? You did not sell the letters. The book money is gone already, I guess.

HEWITT: I haven't sold my book very well.

KING: The book did not sell well?

HEWITT: No.

KING: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) why do you think?

HEWITT: I don't know. I think it was slammed before it had a chance to get out there, really.

KING: You mean they -- people slammed it before they read it?

HEWITT: Yes. Yes.

KING: Why?

HEWITT: They made assumptions incorrectly and it didn't sell. This is the book I (UNINTELLIGIBLE) "War and Love" and talk about.

KING: Yes.

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: From her 1995 interview with the BBC, here's Princess Di talking about how let down she was about James' revelations and we'll ask him to comment. Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRINCESS DIANA: And he had rung me up 10 days before it arrived in the book shops to tell me that it was nothing to worry about. And I believed him, stupidly. And the one -- when it did arrive, the first thing I did was rushed out and talked to my children. And William produced the book of chocolates, said, Mommy, I think you've been hurt. These are to make you smile again. So...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did your relationship go beyond a close friendship?

PRINCESS DIANA: Yes, it did. Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were you unfaithful?

PRINCESS DIANA: Yes, I adored him. Yes, I was in love with him. But I was very let down.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Were you surprised by what that book, which was not your book, contained?

HEWITT: Yes, I was surprised.

KING: So she was dealing with things she read about you that you're saying were not true

HEWITT: Maybe. I don't know. I mean, I don't know about that. But, I mean, probably.

This is history, really, we're talking about. And a lot has happened in between. And it's -- it's time to move on.

KING: Do people still recognize you on the street? Do they come over to you?

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: Are they generally nice?

HEWITT: They've been absolutely wonderful, yes. I get very good reception.

KING: "The Games" did a lot for you, huh?

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: Why not go back to "The Games"? "Games 2."

HEWITT: They might bring it over here, how about that.

KING; Why not bring it over here? Why don't you bring it over here?

HEWITT: Well, that would be a good idea.

KING: Why not? We'll be right back with more calls for James Hewitt who recently appeared on the British reality TV sports competition called "The Games." He finished second. Who was the winner? Let's give him some credit.

HEWITT: A great chap called Harvey.

KING: Harvey?

HEWITT: Harvey.

KING: He ran 11 seconds of the 10 meter? Go get 'em, Harvey. Don't go away.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: We're back with James Hewitt. We go to Thetford Mines, Quebec, hello.

CALLER: Hello. I'd like to know if there's any truth that James Hewitt might be Prince Harry's father.

HEWITT: I have honestly -- I don't really don't -- I mean, you know.

KING: Do you ever think about it?

HEWITT: No. I don't. I've answered it before

KING: And saying no, right?

HEWITT: Right.

KING: Irondale, Alabama, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. I'd like to know if Diana's sons were ever at home when they were meeting secretly with them.

HEWITT: Yes, they were. Sometimes. I regret when I was there.

KING: They were young at the time right?

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: Tampa, Florida, hello.

CALLER: Yes, Larry. My 2-part question for James Hewitt is, when you're with Princess Diana, did you make it a point to just treat her not as the princess but allow her to be herself? And also throughout the program you have said you wish people would move on. Do you think realistically think that could be happening if your future relationships, subject to Princess Diana will always be a subject of curiosity?

HEWITT: Thank you for that. I mean, I am aware. True. But, you know, this is a human story. I'm part of it. And I think I've explained my part of it quite fully. I've answered my critics. I have answered questions about it. Because I'm aware that there is a public interest and I think that, you know, nothing more can be asked of me in that respect. And I did treat her like -- like you know, like a normal person.

KING: Wasn't it hard to do?

HEWITT: No, not at all. It's very easy.

KING: Really? It would seem to the layman looking at this, boy, this is a worldwide famous person. She's a princess. She's married to a prince. Her husband could be king. You treated her as just...

HEWITT: I think the world saw her as a

KING: Correct.

HEWITT: A loving, caring and wonderful person that she was and that's how I saw her.

KING: But so there was no pedestals involved here? You weren't in awe? To Ellojay, Georgia, hello.

CALLER: Larry, excellent show. I'd like to ask, Mr. Hewitt, Mr. Hewitt how do you think history should judge you and Princess Diana and what do you consider your greatest accomplishment in life?

HEWITT: How is history going to -- well, I hope to be able to do a bit more with my life. So I'm not forever being looked at solely because of my relationship with her. I think there's a lot that can be done and achieved and I'm looking forward to that. So I've -- forgot the second part of the question.

KING: How do you want to be...

HEWITT: How what's my greatest achievement?

KING: Serve your country?

HEWITT: I did. In times of war. And, I think that was a great achievement. But I'm looking to do other great things, too.

KING: You mentioned a few times about drinking. Was that tough to get -- you drank because of what happened?

HEWITT: Yes. I think it helps to numb the pain. Well, I thought it did, but it doesn't actually. I think you have to -- yes. You have got to do it without that. It's a crutch.

KING: Was it easy to stop?

HEWITT: Yes. It wasn't too difficult. I mean, I was...

KING: You're not a classic alcoholic then?

HEWITT: No. I don't think I am.

KING: Willard, Wyoming, hello.

CALLER: Yes, Larry. It's great talking with you and James. KING: Thank you.

CALLER: My question is, what did Diana say to you if anything about the surgeon she was having an affair with?

KING: About the what?

CALLER: About the surgeon that she was having an affair with.

KING: Did you know about that?

HEWITT: That was well after me. I didn't know anything about it.

KING: Althus, Oklahoma, hello.

CALLER: Hello. Yes. I was wondering if there are some things about Diana that James thinks the public should know that's never been told. About her as a person.

KING: Anything we don't know? Very good question.

HEWITT: I don't think so. I think we know practically everything.

KING: I mean, did she have any hobbies we didn't know about?

HEWITT: I think -- I think everything's out there.

KING: She's public.

HEWITT: She -- yes. Rightly or wrongly. I don't think there's much more.

KING: Victoria, British Columbia, hello.

CALLER: Hello. Mr. Hewitt...

HEWITT: Hello

CALLER: ...if the situation were reversed and you're the famous person and a lover of yours wanted your letters published, how would you feel?

HEWITT: I would feel very badly about it. I'm not seeking to publish any letters. I think that must be cleared up right away. I have no intention to do that at all.

KING: All right. There was a time you thought of it, right?

HEWITT: I have never said...

KING: You never said, these are on the market? What are my offers?

HEWITT: I've never thought about publishing the letters at all. I never tried to sell them. I was approached in a sting by the "News Of The World. Which is a tabloid in London.

KING: They stung you by making a pitch?

HEWITT: That's correct.

KING: You ought to be a little ticked.

HEWITT: Yes.

KING: Weston, Connecticut, hello. Try it again. Weston, Connecticut, hello. Hello? All right. We'll take a break and come back with the remaining moments with James Hewitt right after this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: We're back and now we have Weston, Connecticut. Hello.

CALLER: Hello, Larry.

KING: Yeah, hi.

CALLER: My question is for Mr. Hewitt.

KING: Sure.

CALLER: I wondered if he was in a romantic relationship at the moment.

HEWITT: Sadly, not. I'm not.

KING: You want to be, though?

HEWITT: Oh, yes, yes.

KING: You miss being in love?

HEWITT: Yes, you know, I do. It's a nice feeling.

KING: And you've never been married, right?

HEWITT: I've never been married.

KING: You would like to be married and have children?

HEWITT: Yeah. If the right person comes along.

KING: Calgary, Ontario, hello.

CALLER: Calgary, Alberta.

KING: Alberta, I'm sorry. Go ahead. I should know that from hockey. OK. Go ahead.

CALLER: I watch your show all the time, LARRY KING LIVE. This is a special show. You have special guests on. Mr. James Hewitt, are you planning to do anymore reality television? KING: Good question.

HEWITT: Well, actually, might be room for one more. I don't want to overegg the bread, but I think I'd prefer to be a presenter, doing what or produce (ph) it in some way.

KING: Has someone approached you about being on another one, though, with the success of "The Games?"

HEWITT: They haven't yet.

KING: You'd rather host -- you'd like to host "The Games?"

HEWITT: I'd much rather host it than be in it. I think it would be a good move. I think...

KING: If you brought it to the United States, sounds like that could be a hit, I mean, just off the top -- our interest in sports, every day people wanting to do extraordinary things.

HEWITT: It was a fabulous program, and it was positive. You know, many of the reality programs are negative, like vote me out of here or get me off here, but this was very positive and everyone gelled.

KING: They vote -- well, get me out of here.

HEWITT: Get me out of here.

KING: They started in Britain, didn't they?

HEWITT: Yeah.

KING: Yeah, I know. Riverside, California, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. Thank you for taking my call.

KING: Sure.

CALLER: Mr. Hewitt, I was wondering, have you heard any feedback from the palace on the book you wrote on Diana?

HEWITT: I didn't write a book on Diana. I wrote a book about my life. It's called "Love and War." And actually, I haven't had any feedback.

KING: Did the palace ever contact you through any of this? Any official source at the palace?

HEWITT: No.

KING: Did you ever think, Charles was also having an affair. He came out a lot better than you did.

HEWITT: Well, he's had some pretty tough times in the -- in the press, as well. KING: Yeah. But they've been very kind to him. Don't you think, generally?

HEWITT: I don't think they're kind to anybody, actually. That's the problem. But there we are. We have to get on with it.

KING: We have two minutes left. Your plans are to come into television. You would like to do that as a lifestyle?

HEWITT: I think so. It seems to be working at the moment. I have had very positive feedback from there. So stick with something that's going well. And see how it goes. I think it would be, you know, I'd enjoy it.

KING: And you'd like to be -- travel a lot.

HEWITT: I love traveling, I like meeting people. I like -- I like competition. I like a challenge. I am -- and I think I work better under pressure. Other than being on here.

KING: Other than being here. It's a pressure point. All right, one other thing. Can you -- could it be possible in one minute to explain cricket?

HEWITT: Oh, my goodness. Well, there are two teams. On each side. One team's in and the other team is out.

KING: One team is batting and the one team is on the field.

(CROSSTALK)

HEWITT: The team that's out is trying to get the in team out, and it's all very complicated.

KING: And the guy -- because I watched it in South Africa for a week. And I love sports, and I could not figure this out. There's (UNINTELLIGIBLE) throws it on one bounce (ph).

HEWITT: Yes. That's correct.

KING: The batsman hits it. Sometimes he runs.

HEWITT: He meant to.

KING: What?

HEWITT: He meant to hit it.

KING: Yeah. Sometimes he hits it, and sometimes runs and sometimes he doesn't?

HEWITT: And the further he hits it, the more runs he can get.

KING: Yes. And you can play for a week?

HEWITT: You can. Unless it rains, which is likely to do in England. At any moment.

KING: You've been an in guest.

HEWITT: Thank you very much, indeed.

KING: James Hewitt, the ins and the outs. I'll be back in a couple of minutes to tell you about the weekend and Monday night. Don't go away.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: Tomorrow night, Luciano Pavarotti. Sunday, Carol Burnett. Monday night, live with Neil Diamond and your phone calls.

It's the Jewish new year. Happy new year to everybody. My new year too, being of that faith. But it's still just about sundown here, so that's why the other Jewish folk on the network have been off, because it's sundown already in the east.

So Aaron Brown is off. But who's sitting in? Our man from up there, I always think of him up there. My man Miles O'Brien is in Atlanta. He's going to host "NEWSNIGHT," and you know his name is Miles O'Brien, he ain't taking this holiday off.

END

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