Harry and Meghan’s biographer Omid Scobie is no longer ‘royal executive editor’ of Yahoo! News which he used to launch regular attacks against the monarchy
- Harry and Meghan biographer Omid Scobie has parted ways with Yahoo News
- ‘I chose not to renew [my contract] in order to focus on new projects,’ he said
After Spotify axed its £18million deal with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, their biggest cheerleader Omid Scobie is in a similar scrape.
Scobie is no longer the ‘royal executive editor’ of Yahoo! News, the website that gave him a platform to launch regular attacks on the Royal Family.
A notice on the news website refers to Scobie’s role in the past tense. ‘He was Yahoo! News UK’s royal executive editor from 2022-23,’ it says.
Scobie failed to respond to inquiries. However, last night he posted on social media: ‘For those asking, I chose not to renew [my contract] with Yahoo! News in order to focus on new projects.’
His last column, with the typically negative headline ‘Protests and apathy: Why King Charles should be worried about the rise of indifference and republicanism’, was published almost five months ago.
Omid Scobie, pictured interviewed before the Platinum Jubilee Thanksgiving Service at St Paul’s Cathedral in honour of Queen Elizabeth II, has parted ways with Yahoo News
Omid Scobie is the preferred media representative for Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, who saw their £18million deal with Spotify axed last month
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Scobie, to whom, after initial denials, Meghan admitted passing information while he was co-authoring his debut book, Finding Freedom, announced in June that his next title, Endgame, would reveal moments the Royal Family should be ‘ashamed of’.
Observing that the Royal Family had ‘often been held up as role models of civility and decorum’, he declared it would ‘take an accurate look at whether that still holds today’, adding loftily that ‘a full story’ had to be written ‘without fear or favour’.
That would be a remarkable change in approach. Asked three years ago why Meghan had invited him to her last solo appearance as a working royal, Scobie explained that almost all his reporting of the Royal Family had been in the USA, where the attitude was ‘celebratory’.
It’s not, though, just his approach to writing that Scobie subjects to periodic revision: in 2020 he assured an interviewer that he was 33. Yet, according to details he gave to Companies House, he turned 42 last month.
Scobie did not respond to requests for comment.
Last month, it was revealed Scobie’s book had been delayed for three months so he can write new chapters on the Coronation, which are expected to include ‘sensational details’ about Harry’s solo flying visit to the UK to see his father crowned King.
Harry and Meghan are exploring other business plans after their Spotify deal ended
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Mr Scobie, long considered the Sussexes’ preferred royal reporter, is releasing ‘Endgame’ – a ‘penetrating investigation’ about the Royal Family’s ‘fight for survival’ – on November 21.
Endgame will be published three months after its original August date because it will now take in the period of the Coronation, where Harry came to Westminster Abbey without his wife and children, who stayed in California.
Mr Scobie told MailOnline: ‘The release is globally, including UK, on November 21′, adding: ‘I wanted to continue writing through and beyond the Coronation. That wasn’t the original plan’.
Mr Scobie co-authored the 2020 book Finding Freedom about Harry and his wife, and is thought to be close to the Sussexes. In 2021 the Duchess of Sussex apologised in the High Court for failing to remember authorising a senior aide to brief Scobie and co-author Carolyn Durand for the unofficial biography. And at the High Court last month Prince Harry admitted he knew Scobie, before correcting himself and saying: ‘I know of him’.
The journalist, who is the royal editor of US website Harper’s Bazaar, is expected to have the inside track on the decision, which saw Harry spend just 28 hours in the UK before returning to LA to see his son Archie on his birthday.
Mr Scobie has promised the book will be full of ‘unique insight, deep access and exclusive revelations’.
Omid Scobie announced the release of Endgame last year but has now announced the publication date as November 21, 2023 – three months later than first mooted
Moving the publishing date will give the author a chance to include inside material through and beyond the King’s coronation.
Prince Harry notably was sat in the third row of the ceremony at Westminster Abbey and played no formal role in the proceedings, jetting off after less than 24 hours in the UK.
READ MORE: WHAT’S NEXT FOR HARRY AND MEGHAN AFTER £18M SPOTIFY DEAL WAS AXED?
With no sign of any reconciliation between the duke and his father and brother, a change of publication date leads to concerns Scobie could wring every drop out of the row between the family.
Commenting on MrScobie’s announcement, royal biographer Richard Fitzwilliams said: ‘He’s writing about the royal family and he’s also Harry and Meghan’s unofficial spokesperson, some sensational details are bound to follow. However, how well sourced are they?
‘No reputable royal source would talk to Omid Scobie.’
The author’s previous title, Finding Freedom, covered the Duke and Duchess of Sussexes’ decision to step down as senior royals.
Mr Fitzwilliams went on: ‘His book, co-written with Carolyn Durand, Finding Freedom, which the Sussexes were discovered to have cooperated with despite their denials, was badly written and pathetically inadequate.
‘His new book is entitled Endgame. Some might think the title refers to the current state of the Sussexes’ affairs. It is worth remembering that they reportedly had a four-book deal with Random House.
‘Spare, Harry’s memoir, contained some highly Ill-judged passages including the number of Taliban he killed on his second tour of duty of Afghanistan.’
Following the leak of Spare in January, ex-Army chief Colonel Richard Kemp called Harry’s comments ‘ill-judged’ and said soldiers are not trained to regard their targets as ‘subhuman’ – while former National Security Adviser Lord Darroch said he would have cautioned the Duke from disclosing his kill count.
Mr Fitzwilliams added: ‘Much of Endgame is not likely to be taken seriously. It is likely to be a sensational attempt to cash in on the Sussexes’ rift with the royal family. I suspect it will be trusted as much as anything from the Sussexes’ corner should be.
A six-part Netflix TV series called Harry & Meghan was released in December last year
‘It will be assumed to have been written with their approval as Finding Freedom provably was. What is really worrying is, what comes next. Ironically it seems to be the Sussexes who, to quote Endgame’s blurb “fight for survival” not the royal family.’
Scobie announced his second book last year, in which he said Endgame would ‘pull back the curtain on an institution in turmoil—exposing the chaos, family dysfunction, distrust and draconian practices threatening its very future’.
According to a statement released by the publisher: ‘On September 8, 2022, the world stood still as news broke of Queen Elizabeth II’s passing.
‘Her death dismantled the protective shield around the world’s most famous family, and saw a long-simmering crisis of confidence in the British monarchy begin to resurface.
‘Now, with unique insight, deep access and exclusive revelations, journalist Omid Scobie pulls back the curtain on an institution in turmoil—exposing the chaos, family dysfunction, distrust and draconian practices threatening its very future.
‘This is the monarchy’s endgame. Do they have what it takes to save it?’
Mr Scobie has been a firm cheerleader for Harry and Meghan over recent years, having co-authored a highly sympathetic biography of the couple in 2020.
He is one of the closest journalists to Harry and Meghan since their move to America.
It comes at a difficult time for Harry and Meghan, with Spotify announcing earlier last month that it was dropping the Duchess’s podcast, Archetypes.
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