Prince Harry Says Life as a Royal Was Like ‘The Truman Show’
Prince Harry compared royal life to The Truman Show.
On Thursday (May 13), Harry sat down with Dax Shepard for an episode of the actor's Armchair Expert podcast. During the conversation, the Duke of Sussex spoke candidly about his experience in the royal limelight.
Harry described his upbringing as a member of the British royal family as "a mix between The Truman Show and being in a zoo." The meta 1998 film starred Jim Carrey as a man who did not know that he was the star of a hidden reality show about his life.
Harry revealed that he began to question his role as a royal in his early twenties. His staff apparently told him to "get on with it" and to smile through his problems. He even referenced his mother Princess Diana's 1997 death from a car crash after being chased by paparazzi.
"I don't want this job, I don't want to be here. I don't want to be doing this. Look what it did to my mom," Harry shared. "How am I ever going to settle down and have a wife and family, when I know that it's gonna happen again? Because I know. I've seen behind the curtain. I've seen the business model. I know how this operation runs and how it works. I don't want to be part of this."
Harry said that the biggest problem for royals is the fact that they "inherit every element of it without choice." It wasn't until meeting and then marrying Meghan Markle and going to therapy that he realized that he needed to escape the royal lifestyle.
He revealed that there were three times in his life when he felt completely helpless: when he was child in the car with his mother while they were being chased by paparazzi, when he was in Afghanistan flying in an Apache helicopter, and a moment where he was with his wife. "Those are the moments in my life where, yeah, feeling helpless hurts. It really hurts," he admitted.
Although he had privilege, platform and influence, he couldn't change his royal lineage. Once he realized that, "that's when it [started] taking a toll."
"I plucked my head out of the sand and gave it a good shake off," Harry explained "I was like, 'Okay. You're in this position of privilege, stop complaining or stop thinking as though you want something different. Make this different, because you can't get out. How are you going to do this differently? How are you going to make your mom proud? How are you going to use this platform to really affect change and be able to give people that confidence to be able to change their own lives?'"
Thankfully, although paparazzi are still a hassle, life has become more "normal" for Harry, Meghan and their growing family since moving to California.