Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during sit-down interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during the sit-down interview with Oprah Winfrey.
  • Harry and Meghan told Oprah they hadn't planned to move to the US or sign streaming deals.
  • The couple signed streaming deals with Netflix and Spotify to pay for security, Harry said.
  • Harry said he was cut off from the royal family in 2020, and used inheritance from his mom to move.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle said they hadn't always planned on moving to California or setting up streaming deals – and that they did the latter because they needed the money – during their tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey.

When Winfrey asked the couple if they had anything to say to critics of their lucrative Netflix and Spotify deals, Harry said they hadn't considered streaming before and that they made the decision to pay for their security costs.

"First of all, this was never the intention, and we're certainly not complaining," Harry responded.

"Our life is great now. We've got a beautiful house. We've got a – I've got a beautiful family," he added. "The dogs are really happy. But, at the time, during COVID, the suggestion by a friend was, 'What about streamers?'"

"We hadn't thought about it. So, there were all sorts of different options," Harry continued. "And, look, from my perspective, all I needed was enough money to be able to pay for security to keep my family safe."

Prince Harry said inheritance from Princess Diana made his family's move possible

Earlier in the interview, Harry had revealed that the royal family had financially cut him off in early 2020 and that he and Markle had been relying on an inheritance left by his mother, Princess Diana. Speaking of his inheritance, Harry told Winfrey: "without that, we would not have been able to do this."

prince harry princess diana
Prince Harry during his interview with Oprah Winfrey, and Princess Diana in 1985.
CBS/Getty/Tim Graham

Harry and Markle have been living in California since March 2020 after briefly residing in Canada, when they said they were told that their security was being taken away. When asked why, Harry told Oprah: "Their justification is a change in status, of which I pushed back and said, 'Well, is there a change of threat or risk?'"

"After many weeks of waiting, eventually, I got the confirmation that, no, the risk and threat hasn't changed, but due to our change of status, which we would no longer be official working members of the royal family," he added.

He said that because of an article published in the Daily Mail, the world knew their exact location, and it was no longer safe for them to stay in their home.

Harry and Meghan Markle have settled into their California life

When they first moved to the US, Markle and Harry stayed at the Los Angeles home of director Tyler Perry, where they lived for three months, before moving to their current residence in Santa Barbara. A spokesperson for the couple told Insider in August 2020 that Markle and Harry had moved into their new home in July of that year.

When Winfrey asked Harry what delights him most about life in America with Markle and Archie, he said that although it's been a "crazy" year, having outdoor space and being close to the beach has helped him spend quality time with his family.

"I guess the highlight for me is sticking him on the back of the bicycle in his little baby seat and take him on these bike rides, which is something I was never able to do when I was young," Harry said of Archie and his own upbringing in the royal family.

Representatives for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex declined to comment. Representatives for Buckingham Palace didn't immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

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