Thomas Markle, the estranged father of Meghan Markle, is sounding off about his daughter and son-in-law Prince Harry's relationship with Oprah Winfrey following her bombshell interview with the couple in March.
In a new interview with 60 Minutes Australia, Markle, 76, revealed he thinks Winfrey is exploiting the couple, and says that he even attempted to reach out to Winfrey to share his own side of the story.
"I think Oprah Winfrey is playing Harry and Meghan," said Markle, who has not spoken to his daughter in three years. "I think she's using them to build her network and her new shows, and I think she's taking advantage of a very weakened man and getting him to say things that you just shouldn't be saying on television."
"It seems to me that she's pushing it to get more and more out of it, and Apple stock is going up," said Markle, referring to Harry and Winfrey's new Apple TV+ series, The Me You Can't See. "Her show is going up. So to have someone bare their soul on four, five different shows to 50, 60 million people, even Dr. Phil wouldn't do that."
When asked if he has watched The Me You Can't See, Markle said he has seen "some of it" and believes "it's a set-up." "I think she's patting herself on the back and making a lot of money on this," he said. "I'm sure she gives Harry money and Meghan money, but I don't think it compensates for what they're doing."
When asked if he has attempted to speak with his daughter, Markle claimed he was "waiting for them to get to me" after trying to reach them early on but "never getting through." However, he admitted that he has tried to reach Winfrey, leaving a letter at her gate "with my phone number and email."
"I said, 'give me a chance to tell my story,'" Markle explained. "I said it's not fair to tell this story without hearing my story. I've [gotten] no response."
Markle went on to say that he's "not attacking Oprah" but thinks Harry is "being put in a position where he's saying things he'll never be able to take back. That's a horrible thing."
Video: Thomas Markle responds to Oprah interview
Despite this, he claims he wishes "Harry and Meghan and Archie and hopefully my new granddaughter all the love and best wishes in the world."
Markle is no stranger to talking to the press about his daughter. Last year, he appeared in a 90-minute documentary, Thomas Markle: My Story, for which he sold never-before-seen photos and videos of Meghan as a child, Yahoo Entertainment previously reported. Discussing the royals, Markle said, “At this point, they owe me. The royals owe me. Harry owes me, Meghan owes me. What I've been through, I should be rewarded for. My daughter told me that when I reach my senior years she'll take care of me. I'm in my senior years now — it's time to look after Daddy.”
Despite Markle's statements, his daughter and Prince Harry have had quite a joyous month. They welcomed their second child, Lilibet "Lili" Diana Mountbatten-Windsor, on Friday, June 4, announcing the happy news two days later. Prince William and Kate Middleton took to Instagram to celebrate their new niece with a photo of Meghan and Harry with their 2-year-old son, Archie.
"We are all delighted by the happy news of the arrival of baby Lili," the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who have three children of their own, wrote, Yahoo Entertainment previously reported. "Congratulations to Harry, Meghan and Archie."
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