'It is a huge responsibility': Prince Harry and Oprah team up for new show on mental health
Meghan Markle may no longer be on TV, but her husband Prince Harry is heading to the small screen.
On Wednesday, the 34-year-old royal and Oprah Winfrey announced they are teaming up to produce a docuseries on mental health. The powerful pair are “partners, co-creators and executive producers” on the series, which will launch on Apple in 2020, palace officials said.
“I truly believe that good mental health — mental fitness — is the key to powerful leadership, productive communities and a purpose-driven self,” the Duke of Sussex said on his new Instagram account.
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We are excited to announce that The Duke of Sussex and Oprah Winfrey are partners, co-creators and executive producers on their forthcoming mental health series launching on Apple in 2020. The pair have been developing the series for several months and are looking forward to sharing such an important project on this global platform. The dynamic multi-part documentary series will focus on both mental illness and mental wellness, inspiring viewers to have an honest conversation about the challenges each of us faces, and how to equip ourselves with the tools to not simply survive, but to thrive. This commitment builds on The Duke of Sussex’s long-standing work on issues and initiatives regarding mental health, where he has candidly shared personal experience and advocated for those who silently suffer, empowering them to get the help and support they deserve. His Royal Highness has spent many years working with communities throughout the UK and young people across the Commonwealth to break the stigma surrounding mental illness and broaden the conversation of mental wellness to accelerate change for a more compassionate, connected and positive society. Quote from HRH: “I truly believe that good mental health – mental fitness – is the key to powerful leadership, productive communities and a purpose-driven self. It is a huge responsibility to get this right as we bring you the facts, the science and the awareness of a subject that is so relevant during these times. Our hope is that this series will be positive, enlightening and inclusive – sharing global stories of unparalleled human spirit fighting back from the darkest places, and the opportunity for us to understand ourselves and those around us better. I am incredibly proud to be working alongside Oprah on this vital series.”
“It is a huge responsibility to get this right as we bring you the facts, the science and the awareness of a subject that is so relevant during these times. Our hope is that this series will be positive, enlightening and inclusive, sharing global stories of unparalleled human spirit fighting back from the darkest places and the opportunity for us to understand ourselves and those around us better.”
The father-to-be added that he is “incredibly proud to be working alongside Oprah on this vital series.”
Responding to the news shared on Instagram, Winfrey commented: “Delighted to be partnering with you. Hope we shed a lot of light. And change some lives!”
Prince Harry has been open about his mental health struggles in the past.
After the death of his mother Princess Diana in 1997, the Duke of Sussex said he dealt with great grief and sought counselling. He previously told the Daily Telegraph that he “shut down all his emotions” for nearly 20 years and had been “very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions.”
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Prince Harry has also worked with mental health charity Heads Together alongside Prince William and Kate Middleton. The royal has said it’s his mission to help end the stigma around mental illness.
The partnership with Prince Harry comes after Winfrey signed a multi-year deal with Apple in 2018 to create original programs for its streaming service.
In March, Apple invited media to an event at the Steve Jobs Theater on its campus in Cupertino, Calif., where the company officially announced its new streaming service, called Apple TV Plus.
The event was studded with celebrities, including Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon and Jason Momoa.
—With files from the Associated PressFollow @lolahensley