Prince Andrew’s interview about his friendship with disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, which made so many headlines last year, has now been nominated for a BAFTA Film Awards in the category of News Coverage. Interestingly enough, the Duke of York’s nephew, Prince William, has been the president of BAFTA since 2010.
The interview was conducted by Emily Maitlis for BBC’s Newsnight in November and soon caused a furore, prompting the Queen Elizabeth’s second son to eventually step down from his public duties. One of the major criticisms that fall upon Prince Andrew’s head was his refusal to regret his association with the now deceased sex offender Epstein, even after the financier’s conviction
Viewers were also taken aback by confusion in Prince Andrew’s testimony about his alleged acquaintance with Epstein’s alleged sex slave Virginia Roberts Giuffre. The woman previously asserted that she was forced to have sex with the royal on at least three occasions in New York and London, between 1999 when she was just 17, and 2002.
The Prince argued during the interview that he did not remember meeting Giuffre, despite a photo of them together. He also said that on the day of one of the alleged encounters between the two back in 2001, he was busy staying home with his children after going to a party at Pizza Express. Many of the prince’s critics, however, did not buy his arguments.
Despite the major backlash the Duke of York faced after the show aired, his interviewer Maitlis still expressed her admiration for the prince’s “candour” and noted that her programme did not attempt to “bring down the Royals".
“I didn't like people saying, 'Oh, it's a car crash interview,' because I thought, 'That's not enticing, that's not encouraging.' I don't want people thinking that's what happens at Newsnight”, the journalist said back in December.