Prince Andrew And His Aides Thought Infamous Newsnight Interview 'Went Wonderfully'
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That infamous interview for BBC's Newsnight between journalist Emily Maitlis and Prince Andrew over his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein and accusations of underage sex with Virginia Giuffre is considered pretty unforgettable. For some, it's even been described as a disaster.
However, Prince Andrew and his royal aides reportedly don't see it that way.
Sam McAlister, who spent 10 years producing interviews for the flagship BBC news programme, has now claimed that the 2019 interview was considered a success by Prince Andrew and his team.
He was reportedly so happy after the interview that he offered producer Sam, Emily Maitlis and the rest of the BBC team a tour of the palace and grounds.
The hour long interview was described afterwards by viewers as 'excruciating' to watch and has even been cited as 'what not to do' in the face of a crisis.
Her latest book – titled Scoops: Behind The Scenes Of The BBC’s Most Shocking Interviews – details behind the scenes events of some of the BBC's top interviews, including the infamous Newsnight interview, and goes on sale on14 July but in an exclusive to the Daily Mail, she has revealed how awkward the interview was to witness.
She said: "Each time I thought it couldn’t get any worse, it did."
Later, she added: "I could barely believe his people hadn’t stopped the interview. I would have, despite the consequences. "'How did you think it went?' I asked the equerry. She beamed. 'Wasn’t he wonderful!' she said.
"I’d expected [Andrew’s then private secretary] Amanda Thirsk to be distraught, the prince to look shaken or concerned, but she was smiling, and he seemed ebullient.
"And then it hit me: he actually thought it had gone well. He was in such a good mood that he offered us all a tour of the palace."
During the hour long interview, the senior royal gave memorable answers to questions - some of which were later ridiculed by viewers at home.
When questioned on whether he had slept with Virginia Giuffre, who would have been below the age of consent at the time, he denied it three times. However, he claimed one encounter in 2001 definitely did not happen as he had taken his daughter Princess Beatrice to Pizza Express in Woking for a party.
Another claim from Giuffre that the royal figure had sweated profusely during a sexual encounter was dismissed, with Prince Andrew claiming how he had a medical condition at the time which meant he did not sweat.