Katie Couric dishes on Prince Harry and Prince Andrew in upcoming memoir
Get caught up on all the biggest royals-related news you might have missed in September 2021, starting with these gossipy royal tidbits from a TV journalist… Former "Today" show host Katie Couric has quite a bit to say about her former colleagues as well as other stars in her upcoming memoir, "Going There," which comes out in late October. Two of the anecdotes that made headlines on Sept. 30 after being leaked by DailyMail.com — the tabloid revealed it's seen Katie's manuscript — concern Britain's Prince Harry and Prince Andrew. Katie allegedly writes that when she met Harry in 2012 at a polo match in Brazil during his "wild-oats sowing phase" — this was about two months before he was photographed playing strip billiards in a Las Vegas hotel room — the smell of cigarettes and alcohol seemed to "ooze from every pore" of his body. Katie also shares that she was a guest at an infamous 2010 dinner party at the home of Jeffrey Epstein — the convicted pedophile financier who died by suicide in 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges — that was also attended by his pal Prince Andrew. "I couldn't imagine what Epstein and Andrew were up to, apart from trying to cultivate friends in the media. Which, in retrospect, they must have figured they'd need when the pedophilia charges started rolling in," she writes in her book, as reported by DailyMail.com. Katie goes on to describe the criminal's $75 million New York City townhouse, where guests ate lasagna out of shallow bowls, as "'Eyes Wide Shut' with a twist — creepy chandeliers and body-part art," the tabloid reported.
Keep reading for more big global royals news for September…
RELATED: The best royal wedding dresses
Japanese princess will give up royal status, move to NYC after marrying a commoner in coming months
Princess Mako of Japan — the eldest grandchild of Emperor Emeritus Akihito and the niece of the current Emperor Naruhito — is preparing to finally wed her fiancé of four years, who's a commoner. She and Kei Komuro, a former college classmate who in May graduated from Fordham Law School and now works for a New York City law firm, announced their engagement in 2017, but for years postponed their wedding because of a financial scandal involving the groom's mother. Page Six reported in late September that the wedding is now expected to take place in the next two months — at which time Mako will be required to give up her royal status, as dictated by Japan's imperial males-only succession rules, since she's marrying a commoner. The couple are then set to live in NYC, reports reveal, which has led to comparisons to British royals the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Page Six writes that insiders have called the couple "the Meghan and Harry of Japan" as they're "controversially leaving behind a royal life to start a new life in the States." Also of note? Japanese royals who give up their titles are legally entitled to a large payout — but Reuters on Sept. 25 reported that the princess has agreed to forego the $1.35 million she's due. Page Six further reported on Sept. 28 that top New York art galleries are hoping to hire the princess, who has a master's degree in art museum and gallery studies from the University of Leicester and is at present working as a special researcher at the University Museum of the University of Tokyo.
Britain's royals have big night out at the movies
Duchess Kate, Prince William, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Charles had a big night out at the movies on Sept. 28: The foursome attended the world premiere of "No Time to Die" — the 25th installment in the James Bond film franchise — at London's Royal Albert Hall. (Also on hand were the stars of the film including Daniel Craig, Ana de Armas and Lashana Lynch, plus screenwriter Phoebe Waller-Bridge and chart-topper Billie Eilish, who performs the film's theme song — more on a few of them later!) While the men kept things simple in sharp black tuxedos for their big brush with Hollywood, Camilla looked lovely in a pale blue gown. Kate, meanwhile, stole the show in a long-sleeved gold gown.
Keep reading to take a closer look…
Duchess Kate stuns in gold at Bond premiere
All eyes were on Duchess Kate as she walked the red carpet with husband Prince William during the premiere of "No Time to Die" at London's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 28. The mother of three stunned in a long-sleeved sequined Jenny Packham confection featuring a cape, a plunging neckline and a partially sheer skirt.
Keep reading to see it from another angle…
Duchess Kate sports a cape at big movie premiere
Here's a better look at the cape on Duchess Kate's stunning Jenny Packham gown during the world premiere of "No Time to Die" at London's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 28.
Now get a closer look at her matching bling…
Duchess Kate dazzles in gold at Bond premiere
Duchess Kate wore her long brunette locks in a twisted updo and wisely sported naturalistic makeup look during the premiere of "No Time to Die" at London's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 28. She completed her look with massive bejeweled O'NITAA drop earrings — a favorite piece of bling from her personal collection that she previously donned in 2019.
See her brush with Hollywood royalty next…
Duchess Kate meets Billie Eilish and Finneas
You should see her in a crown… Duchess Kate shook hands with Billie Eilish as the Grammy winner's older brother and musical collaborator, Finneas, watched on during the world premiere of "No Time to Die" at London's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 28.
Prince William, meanwhile, got up close and personal with Bond himself…
Prince William reunites with Bond actor Daniel Craig
Prince William shared a laugh with Daniel Craig at the world premiere of "No Time to Die" at London's Royal Albert Hall on Sept. 28. The two men have crossed paths several times over the years. They were first photographed together at the premiere of another Bond movie, "Quantum of Solace," back in 2008.
Now keep reading for more of the biggest royals news from September…
"The Crown" casts its Dodi Fayed and announces season 5 premiere
Those who followed Britain's royal family in the '90s will remember this name and this man who brought joy to princess Diana… Netflix announced via Variety on Sept. 23 that it had cast its Dodi Fayed — Princess Diana's boyfriend who died in the 1997 Paris car crash that later claimed her life too — for season 5: "The Kite Runner" star Khalid Abdalla will play the Egyptian billionaire scion. Variety also reported that "Oslo" actor Salim Daw will play Dodi's father, Harrods department store owner Mohamed Al-Fayed. Elizabeth Debicki is the new Di for season 5. Two days later on Sept. 25, Netflix announced that fans will have to wait until November 2022 for season 5 to debut on the streamer.
Liechtenstein princess weds in Italy
On Sept. 25, Princess Marie Astrid of Liechtenstein married Ralph Worthington in a religious ceremony in Capalbio, Italy. The nuptials came three weeks after her sister, Princess Maria Anunciata of Liechtenstein, walked down the aisle (see her wedding photos further back). Marie Astrid, who's the daughter of Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg and Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein, topped her embroidered wedding gown with the Kinsky Honeysuckle tiara from the Liechtenstein Princely Family, MailOnline reported.
The Sussexes take Manhattan: Day 1
On Sept. 23, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan made headlines as they kicked off a three-day official visit to New York City — their first major event since welcoming their second child, daughter Lilibet Diana, in June, and really, their biggest event to date since leaving as senior members of Britain's royal family in 2020. They first visited Manhattan's One World Observatory with New York Governor Kathy Hochul and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio before paying their respects at the 9/11 Memorial and meeting with the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. Keep reading to see day 2…
The Sussexes take Manhattan: Day 2
On Sept. 24, Duchess Meghan read her bestselling children's book, "The Bench," to children at an elementary school in Harlem, and later that day, she and Prince Harry visited nearby Melba's restaurant where the Duke of Sussex reportedly tried chicken and waffles for the first time. The couple also donated $25,000 to the eatery's COVID-19 Employee Relief Fund. Keep reading to see their third and final day…
The Sussexes take Manhattan: Day 3
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's New York City trip also included a Sept. 25 visit with United Nations officials and culminated in an appearance on stage during Global Citizen Live in Central Park, where they advocated for COVID-19 vaccine equity. While in the Big Apple, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan stayed at the Carlyle, which was one of his late mother Princess Diana's favorite hotels.
Norwegian princess marks milestone 50th birthday with jewelry from American boyfriend
On Sept. 22, Princess Märtha Louise of Norway celebrated her 50th birthday. The Norwegian royal family's Instagram account posted new portraits of the princess, and her boyfriend, Shaman Durek — a spiritual guide and healer based in Los Angeles, who has a celebrity following — surprised her with a gift of garnet and diamond jewelry from designer Paige Novick, People magazine reported. "We're star-crossed lovers across the sea, but our love is defined by friendship and devotion," Shaman Durek told the magazine. "It is through our friendship that we have built this ability to handle the distance between our hearts." He explained that he "wanted to get her a beautiful piece of jewelry that represents friendship and love — that's the garnet stone. The precious diamonds represent the love of the stars that I look upon in the sky knowing that I count the days on when we will be back together."
"The Crown" cleans up at the Emmys
On Sept. 19, the cast and crew of "The Crown" won big at the 2021 Emmy Awards, taking home 11 trophies in categories including best drama series, best actress (Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II), best actor (Josh O'Connor as Prince Charles), best supporting actress (Gillian Anderson as Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher) and best supporting actor (Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip).
Princess Beatrice welcomes first baby
Britain's Princess Beatrice and her husband, property developer Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, welcomed their first child together on Sept. 18. "So delighted to share the news of the safe arrival of our daughter on Saturday 18th September 2021, at 23.42, at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, London," she tweeted. "Thank you to the Midwife team and everyone at the hospital for their wonderful care." Beatrice's baby girl — whose name has yet to be publicly revealed — is Queen Elizabeth II's 12th great-grandchild and is 11th in the line of succession. The baby joins half-brother Christopher Woolf, Edo's son with former fiancé Dara Huang, an American architect.
Scandinavian royal families vacation together
On Sept. 18, the future monarchs of Sweden and Norway both posted photos from a joint family getaway to the Swedish island of Gotland. Sweden's Crown Princess Victoria, husband Prince Daniel and kids Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar posed for a photo with Norway's Crown Prince Haakon, wife Princess Mette-Marit and their eldest child, Princess Ingrid Alexandra. The royals are reportedly good friends and have been close for years.
The latest on Prince Philip's will
On Sept. 16, British media outlets revealed that a High Court judge had ruled that Prince Philip's will would remain private for at least 90 years in order to "maintain the dignity" of his widow, Queen Elizabeth II. Yes, 90 years, not days. Despite widespread criticism and speculation about what information could be in the will, according to a tweet from royals reporter and author Omid Scobie, the "decision follows the tradition of senior royal wills being sealed 'to prevent inspection.'" Philip died in April at 99.
Prince Harry's very special birthday honor
On Prince Harry's 37th birthday — Sept. 15 — he and wife Duchess Meghan were named to Time magazine's prestigious annual 100 Most Influential People list. The couple was honored in an essay written by chef José Andrés, with whom they've worked on humanitarian projects. See the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the cover of Time here.
Prince Andrew's civil sexual assault case drama continues with legal papers debacle
Queen Elizabeth II's second son, Prince Andrew, made headlines again this month as a civil lawsuit filed against him began to move forward. In early August, Virginia Roberts Giuffre — who for years has alleged that she was a victim of convicted pedophile and financier Jeffrey Epstein, a former friend of the royal who died by suicide in 2019 while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges — filed court papers in the States accusing Andrew of having sex with her when she was 17. (He's long denied the allegation.) Media outlets including the New York Post chronicled all the drama that ensued as Virginia's legal team attempted to serve the Duke of York at his home in Windsor, England, as Andrew's legal team attempted to dodge them. After much back and forth — including during a Sept. 13 virtual hearing — the royal was officially and properly served on Sept. 20, CNN reported, via his U.S. attorney, who's also represented clients including Armie Hammer, Bill Cosby, Bryan Singer and Danny Masterson, according to a tweet from royals reporter and author Omid Scobie. The Duke of York has until Oct. 29 to file and serve a response in the case.
Duchess Kate's brother marries in France as royal relatives look on
Duchess Kate's brother, James Middleton — a businessman who founded Ella & Co. dog food and Boomf personalized marshmallow brands — married French financial analyst Alizee Thevenet in southeastern France on Sept. 11 following a two-year engagement. "Mr & Mrs Middleton Yesterday I married the love of my life surrounded by family, friends and of course a few dogs in the beautiful village or Bormes-les-Mimosas. Words cannot describe how happy I am," James captioned this beautiful selfie with his bride on Sept. 12. According to Page Six, the guest list included big sister Kate and her husband, Prince William, plus their kids, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis; sibling Pippa Middleton and her husband, James Matthews, plus their two kids, Arthur and Grace; and of course parents Carole and Mike Middleton. The bride wore a very special dress for her walk down the aisle. "My something borrowed was in fact my dress from my mother-in-law Carole who last wore it 41 years ago on her wedding day in June, 1980," Alizee told HELLO!, explaining, "While talking about dresses with Carole and sharing ideas during lockdown for inspiration, I tried on her wedding dress and fell in love with it. It fitted me perfectly and was exactly what I wanted. It always troubled me that wedding dresses are only worn once so it was amazing to give such a beautiful dress a second lease of life." See a full-length view of the dress, plus wedding photos, here.
Prince Albert addresses rumors of marital strife
Monaco's Prince Albert spoke to People magazine early in the month to set the record straight about rumors and reports about his decade-long marriage to Princess Charlene, who's been in South Africa since May. "She didn't leave Monaco in a huff! She didn't leave because she was mad at me or at anybody else. She was going down to South Africa to reassess her foundation's work down there and to take a little time off with her brother and some friends," he told the magazine in a story that hit the internet on Sept. 8. "It was only supposed to be a weeklong, 10-day maximum stay, and [she is still there now] because she had this infection [and] all these medical complications arose." Reports have claimed the couple's marriage is in trouble, but according to the magazine, Charlene has been unable to fly after experiencing complications, it writes, "related to a sinus lift and bone graft procedure she'd undergone prior to her arrival in preparation for dental implants. As result, she has since had several corrective procedures," including multiple surgeries. "She didn't go into exile. It was absolutely just a medical problem which had to be treated," Albert explained. On Sept. 1, Charlene was taken to a hospital after experiencing further complications "from a serious ENT infection," the palace said in a statement to the magazine, but she was released the following day.
Prince Charles and trusted aide embroiled in cash-for-honors scandal
On Sept. 4, Britain's The Sunday Times and the Mail on Sunday newspapers claimed that one of Prince Charles's top aides promised a Commander of the Order of the British Empire honor, more commonly known as a CBE, as well as help obtaining British citizenship for a wealthy Saudi tycoon in exchange for donations of more than $2 million to the future king's beloved charities. Michael Fawcett — whom Charles once branded "indispensable" — resigned as the chief executive of the Prince's Foundation as the allegations were coming to light. A spokesperson for Charles denied any involvement, telling People magazine in a statement, "The Prince of Wales has no knowledge of the alleged offer of honours or British citizenship on the basis of donation to his charities and fully supports the investigation now underway by The Prince's Foundation." BAZAAR.com notes that the queen's heir now faces possible questioning from Britain's Metropolitan Police, and that days after the claims made headlines, the Times of London further wrote that, according to an alleged fixer with links to Charles, "The Prince of Wales was '100%' behind the offer to help a Saudi billionaire with his application for British citizenship."
Another princess of Liechtenstein weds
On Sept. 4, Princess Maria Anunciata of Liechtenstein married Emanuele Musini in a 12th century church in Vienna, Austria. The bride, who's the daughter of Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg and Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein, wore the Habsburg Fringe tiara on her big day. The religious wedding followed a civil ceremony that was held in June in Italy.