Serena Williams, Adil Ray and Amanda Gorman among big names supporting Harry and Meghan after Oprah interview

  • Video report by ITV News Correspondent Emma Murphy

  • Featuring Royal Biographer @andrewmortonuk and broadcaster @pamanchang

Serena Williams, Adil Ray and Amanda Gorman are among the big names showing support for Meghan Markle and Prince Harry following their bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex lifted the lid on their lives within the Royal Family in the interview, which was aired in the US overnight on Sunday. The two-hour interview will air in the UK on ITV on Monday at 9pm.

The revelations included Meghan's suicidal thoughts, Harry's relationship with Prince Charles, and concerns by a Royal Family member before the birth of son Archie about "how dark" his skin might be.

In a statement on Twitter, tennis star Serena Williams described the duchess as her “selfless friend” who “teaches me every day what it means to be truly noble”.

She said: “Her words illustrate the pain and cruelty she’s experienced.

“I know first hand the sexism and racism institutions and the media use to vilify women and people of colour to minimise us, to break us down and demonise us. We must recognise our obligation to decry malicious, unfounded gossip and tabloid journalism. The mental health consequences of systemic oppression and victimisation are devastating, isolating and all too often lethal.

“I want Meghan’s daughter, my daughter and your daughter to live in a society that is driven by respect.

“Keep in your memory the fruitage of the spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, mildness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

Adil Ray, who has appeared on ITV's Good Morning Britain as a presenter, also tweeted his support for the duchess, saying: "When someone says they’re suicidal we don’t ask them to prove it. When a victim complains to the police about racism there is no initial burden on them to prove it.

"Those who accuse Meghan & Harry of lying undo all the work of MH charities and at the very least enable racism."

Poet Amanda Gorman, who read her piece The Hill We Climb at the inauguration of US President Joe Biden, said Meghan was “the Crown’s greatest opportunity for change, regeneration and reconciliation in a new era”.

“They didn’t just maltreat her light – they missed out on it,” she added.

Before the interview aired, niece of US Vice President Kamala Harris, Meena Harris, tweeted: “Happy Meghan Markle appreciation day.”

After it had finished she said: “Her Majesty The Queen Oprah.”

Bernice King, the youngest child of Martin Luther King, tweeted: “Royalty is not a shield from the devastation and despair of racism.

“I’m grateful that #MeghanMarkle is still here.”

Daniel Martin, who did Meghan’s make-up on her wedding day, shared a picture of the pair on Instagram, alongside a poem from Maya Angelou: “You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt. But still, like dust, I’ll rise.”

Meanwhile, Lord Alan Sugar said he had no comment to make when asked by a follower what his take was on the Harry and Meghan interview.

He tweeted: “I just watched the Harry and Meghan interview with Oprah on US TV. Hmm … I’ll be interested to see the reaction in the UK tomorrow.”

Oprah With Meghan and Harry will be broadcast in the UK on ITV on Monday 8 March at 9pm. It will also be available on ITV Hub.

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