Prince William ‘struggling’ with George after Attenborough film: ‘Why has it come to this’


PRINCE WILLIAM admitted he was “struggling to keep the optimism levels going” regarding climate change, after Prince George was left so upset by a David Attenborough documentary that they had to turn it off.

William, like his father Prince Charles, has long been passionate about protecting and conserving the environment.

He told the Earthshot website: “The Earth is at a tipping point and we face a stark choice: either we continue as we are and irreparably damage our planet, or we remember our unique power as human beings and our continual ability to lead, innovate and problem-solve.

“People can achieve great things. The next ten years present us with one of our greatest tests — a decade of action to repair the Earth.”

The Duke admitted last year that he was “struggling to keep the optimism levels going” after his eldest son Prince George was left so upset by an Attenborough documentary that he told him to turn it off.

David Attenborough and Prince William

William had to turn off an Attenborough documentary at George’s request. (Image: GETTY)

William, Kate and David Attenborough

William and Attenborough launched the Earthshot Prize last year. (Image: GETTY)

During an interview with broadcasters in October 2020, William recalled watching Attenborough’s special on BBC One, Extinction: The Facts.

He said: “So, having watched so many David Attenborough documentaries recently with my children, they absolutely love them.

“The most recent one, the extinction one, actually George and I had to turn it off.

“We got so sad about it halfway through.

“He said to me, you know, I don’t want to watch this anymore, why has it come to this and you know he’s seven years old and he’s asking me these questions already.

“He really feels it and I think every seven-year-old out there can relate to that.”

Prince George at Wembley with his parents

George asked his dad to turn off to Attenborough film as it was too upsetting. (Image: GETTY)

The Duke stressed that he, like every parent, wishes to do the best for his children.

He explained that we need a “decade of change, a decade of repairing the planet” to ensure future generations can enjoy it as we have.

Discussing his son’s sadness, he said: “I think to be perfectly honest I’m struggling to keep the optimism levels going with my own children, and that’s really kind of like a self… an understanding moment where you kind of look at yourself and go ‘am I doing enough on this?’

Prince William with David Attenborough

The Earthshot Prize awards ceremony takes place this Sunday. (Image: GETTY)

“Are we really at this stage in life when I can’t be hugely optimistic and pleased that my children are getting so into nature, because you kind of worry and dread they’re soon going to realise that we are in a very, very dangerous and difficult time in the environment and that as a parent, you feel you’re letting them down immediately.”

Mr Attenborough remains young George’s favourite celebrity, and they have met on numerous occasions.

In a video on the Cambridges’ official Instagram page last year, George asked him: “What animal do you think will become extinct next?”

Mr Attenborough offered an anecdote into work he had done in Africa with a herd of mountain gorillas 40 years ago.

Dermot O'Leary and Clara Amfo

Dermot O’Leary and Clara Amfo will host the Earthshot ceremony. (Image: GETTY)

He explained how showing footage of the gorillas, which were nearly extinct at the time, resulted in an outpouring of public support to save them.

The global mountain gorilla population has quadrupled since the footage first aired, he added.

The ever upbeat broadcaster said: “You can save an animal if you want to and you put your mind to it.”

Sunday’s first-ever Earthshot Prize awards ceremony will be introduced by the Duke, and also features Mr Attenborough.

The evening is being hosted by Clara Amfo and Dermot O’Leary, and artists including Ed Sheeran and Coldplay will perform too.

Coldplay’s performance, outside the iconic London venue, will use energy powered by 60 cyclists.

The Earthshot Prize: Repairing Our Planet airs on Sunday at 8pm on BBC One.

It will be available to stream globally on Discovery’s Facebook page.


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