by Lena Grossman | Tue., Apr. 30, 2019 5:00 PM
Just because Prince Harry is a royal, that doesn't mean he can shirk some of his more mundane day-to-day duties. Although, to be fair, there's nothing mundane about teaming up with Oprah Winfrey on a new Apple docuseries about mental health that's set to launch in 2020.
Oprah was honored at The Hollywood Reporter's inaugural Empowerment in Entertainment Gala on Tuesday and talked to E! News a bit about her partnership with the Duke of Sussex.
"We're excited to be exploring it together. He's a true partner," she told E! News' Melanie Bromley.
Being a "true partner" means communicating on a regular basis and it turns out that Prince Harry is happy to oblige. Not even awaiting his royal baby with Meghan Marklewill stop the 34-year-old from getting back to Oprah and collaborating on their project. As it turns out, Oprah and Meghan are friends (she was at the royal wedding!) and Oprah also believes that the Duchess of Sussex is "being portrayed unfairly."
When asked if Prince Harry is a decent communicator and hits "reply" on his royal email account, Oprah confirmed, "Yes, he does answer emails."
Especially when they're from Oprah!
The media mogul gave a few details about what their email correspondence usually includes.
"Every week we do a weekly update letting him know where we are, directors we've spoken to, how many people we're planning on bringing on board and what we're thinking of naming it," she explained.
She continued, "He weighs in. He always has something to say about everything."
Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage, Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty Images
As "empowerment" was the theme of the day, the talk show host discussed what the word means to her.
"The only way to be empowered comes from my favorite definition by Gary Zukav's book The Seat of the Soul," she said. "Authentic is power. Authentic, the only kind that really lasts, is when you align your personality with what your soul actually came to do. So being able to use your personality to serve the higher calling of your purpose and your soul and you mesh those two, that's when nobody can touch you. That's when you are in your unique power moment."
Those are some words to live by.
On April 10, Prince Harry released a statement via his Sussex Royal Instagram account that talked about the significance behind their new partnership and why it means so much to him.
"I truly believe that good mental health - mental fitness - is the key to powerful leadership, productive communities and a purpose-driven self," he said. "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."
He concluded his note by saying he was "incredibly proud to be working alongside Oprah on this vital series."
Oprah even commented on the post and wrote, "Delighted to be partnering with you. Hope we shed a lot of Light. And change some lives!"
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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.”
A post shared by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (@sussexroyal) on
Mental health has always been a focal point for Prince Harry as well as his brother Prince William and sister-in-law Kate Middleton. He told The Telegraph in April 2017 that his mother Princess Diana's death took a huge toll on his mental and emotional well-being.
He revealed to The Telegraph's Bryony Gordon, "I have probably been very close to a complete breakdown on numerous occasions when all sorts of grief and sort of lies and misconceptions and everything are coming to you from every angle."
Prince Harry also said learning how to box "really saved" him and helped with aggression.
The Empowerment in Entertainment event "honors those who have created opportunities for people of color, women, members of the LGBTQ community and other emerging voices in the industry," and it was fitting that Oprah be the one to receive the first-ever award.
Jesse Grant/Getty Images for THR
The 65-year-old didn't just get an award, either. Casamigos served custom cocktails—the "Pink Flamingo" and "Margarita Verde"—at the event and the George Clooney-backed tequila company gifted her with her own custom bottle. She's known to love the libation and even hand out shots of tequila on occasion.
Oprah gave a rousing speech at the Empowerment in Entertainment gala and said that she was proud that people are "stepping into our power to make a lasting impact on the next generations."
She said, "I stand here today, feeling more empowered than ever before. I come as one and I stand as 10,000, grateful beyond words to look around this room and know that we are all here to fulfill the dreams of those who came before us. We are here not merely to bear witness, but to be the new voices of an extraordinary new age."
Oprah concluded on an extremely positive and inspirational note that merged the present and future. She asserted, "A new day is no longer on the horizon. The new day is now!"
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