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Lorraine Kelly brands Prince Andrew 'naive' over Newsnight interview

The presenter spoke to former Newsnight producer Sam McAlister on Thursday


Lorraine Kelly, Prince Andrew split image
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
28 March 2024
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Lorraine Kelly has given her take on Prince Andrew's now-infamous Newsnight interview, in which journalist Emily Maitlis grilled him over his relationship with convicted sex offender and financier, Jeffrey Epstein.

During Thursday's edition of her ITV programme, the presenter welcomed former Newsnight producer Sam McAlister, who was key in securing the Duke of York's 2019 interview. 

The pair were chatting about Prince Andrew's initial reaction to the interview, with Sam explaining that the royal thought the interview had gone well.

WATCH: Lorraine Kelly brands Prince Andrew ‘naive’ over Newsnight interview

"He thought he'd done a great job," said Sam, recalling the moments after the interview ended. "It is extraordinary. After 59 years of being told you're incredible and amazing, it sinks in and you start to believe the hype. Everybody gets that when they rise but to be a royal puts you to the extreme degree of it. I think he felt he'd done a good job and was very jolly afterwards.

"It was a real moment where you saw all the journalists going, 'Oh my god, we've got to get out of here!'"

Sam McAlister at the Scoop film premiere in London© Dave Hogan/Hogan Media/Shutterstock
Sam McAlister is a former Newsnight producer

"You could see that," responded Lorraine. "You could see that you just wanted to get the tapes and run for the hills, back to the BBC before they changed their minds and they didn't."

Giving her opinion on Prince Andrew's response to the interview, Lorraine continued: "That, to me, just summed him up in a way as being either, you could be generous and say naive or you could say dumb, you could say many things. 

Lorraine Kelly sits on sofa wearing orange shirt© Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock
Lorraine gave her opinion on Prince Andrew's Newsnight interview

"For him to put himself in that position, first of all, and then to do such damage to his reputation that he basically is now persona non grata, that just doesn't happen usually, does it?"

Sam appeared on the show ahead of the release of Netflix's new film Scoop, which dramatises the interview, giving an inside account of how BBC journalists got Andrew in front of the camera. 

Rufus Sewell as Prince Andrew in Scoop
© Netflix
Rufus Sewell plays Prince Andrew in Scoop

Billie Piper plays Sam in the film, which also stars Gillian Anderson as Emily, Rufus Sewell as Andrew, and Keeley Hawes as Andrew's former private secretary Amanda Thirsk. 

The synopsis reads: "Inspired by real events, Scoop is the inside account of the tenacious journalism that landed an earthshattering interview - Prince Andrew's infamous BBC Newsnight appearance. 

Gillian Anderson stars in SCOOP© netflix
Gillian Anderson stars as Emily Maitlis

"From the tension of producer Sam McAlister's high stakes negotiations with Buckingham Palace, all the way to Emily Maitlis' jaw-dropping, forensic showdown with the Prince, Scoop takes us inside the story, with the women who would stop at nothing to get it. To get an interview this big, you have to be bold."

Scoop will be available to stream on Netflix on April 5.

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