Omid Scobie today finally appeared to admit for the first time that he did write the names of the so-called ‘royal racists’ in an ‘early’ version of Endgame.
Writing for the i newspaper, the Sussexes’ favoured royal reporter again blamed a Dutch publisher for the scandal that has led to Buckingham Palace considering legal action.
But he did admit that translators in the Netherlands were sent an ‘early’ manuscript that was never updated with the final version pored over by lawyers. This week he also said Endgame was written at ‘lightning speed’.
The Dutch translation of the book has been pulled after it named Charles and Kate as the royals alleged to have asked what colour Prince Archie’s skin might be.
Mr Scobie said: ‘Unbeknownst to me at the time, early and uncleared text was provided to the Dutch publisher in order for them to start work on the translation, with the understanding that their translation would be updated to reflect the final version of the book I officially submitted’.
He added: ‘To be clear, the only publisher I worked directly with was the one covering the US and UK. I spent almost two months with independent British barristers and in-house legal counsel to ensure that every detail in the finished book was legally watertight’.
Omid Scobie today revealed the names of the royals in the Dutch version of Endgame were in an ‘early’ version of his book
The Dutch version of Endgame, which has had to be pulled from bookshops and pulped
The names of King Charles and the Princess of Wales only appeared in the Dutch version, with Mr Scobie swearing on his own life – and his family’s – that it was not a publicity stunt to sell more books.
The author has been described as Meghan’s mouthpiece – but neither she nor Harry has so far spoken up in defence of the royals over highly damaging accusations of racism.
In today’s column, entitled ‘Endgame backlash shows how unwilling we are to confront racism’, Mr Scobie also called on King Charles to use his reign to confront the Royal Family’s links to slavery.
He said: ‘Shooing away opportunities to meaningfully explore the royal institution’s historic links to slavery (and the impact its legacy has had on the country), or have serious conversations around the royal institution’s failure to protect its only family member of colour, sends a clear message that the issues just don’t matter’.
He added: ‘Rather than properly address everything as part of a genuine attempt to modernise and better reflect the diverse country they serve, the Royal Family continue to sweep the issues, and more, under the rug’.
Scobie’s controversial new book sold just under 6,500 copies in Britain.
Endgame, a follow-up to Scobie’s 2020 book Finding Freedom, dropped to 215th on the Amazon bestseller list after just a week on the shelves.
It was widely pilloried even by normally sympathetic media outlets like the New York Times, which described one chapter as ‘like a press release cooked up by ChatGPT’.
Most reaction to the book has focused on its Dutch language edition, which included the names of two family members accused by the Duchess of Sussex of ‘unconscious bias’.
The original ‘racism’ claim was made in the Sussexes’ infamous March 2021 Oprah Winfrey interview (pictured)
The book claimed Meghan had named the King as well as daughter-in-law Kate in letters she wrote to him on the issue.
Yet even this controversy has done little to boost its success, with Nielsen putting British sales figures for the first five days at 6,448.
By contrast, Scobie’s first book on the Sussexes, Finding Freedom, sold 31,000 in its first five days while Harry’s autobiography Spare sold 467,183 – making it the fastest selling non-fiction book since records began in 1998.
The book is now in the table behind activity book Things To Do While You Poo On The Loo and children’s titles such as Dormouse Has a Cold, the Beano annual, Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Stick Man.
Charles is expected to consult Prince William this week to discuss their response to the storm after Buckingham Palace said it is ‘considering all options’ when it comes to a response.
Neither Harry nor Meghan have commented publicly on the race row but a source close to the Duchess said ‘it was not leaked to Mr Scobie by anyone in her camp’.
Meghan Markle’s Hollywood relaunch is ‘not going to plan’ and may already have been scuppered because the royal race row sparked by Omid Scobie’s new book could make her ‘too hot to handle’, experts told MailOnline yesterday.
Meghan Markle, pictured at Variety’s ‘Power of Women’ gala where she teased ‘exciting’ new projects – but experts have said that Omid Scobie’s book could be bad news for her reputation and deal with WME
The Duchess of Sussex recently signed with William Morris Endeavor (WME) mega-agent Ari Emanuel whose clients include Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, tennis star Serena Williams, among other A-Listers.
Brand and culture expert Nick Ede told MailOnline that Endgame could be as dangerous for her career as Spare – her husband’s memoir – was for Prince Harry, claiming her representatives in LA will be worried she has ‘tarnished her reputation and could potentially damage the reputation of her agency’.
Mr Ede believes Meghan could soon become ‘too hot to handle’ after two members of Harry’s family were named as being at the centre of the race row allegations in a Dutch version of the book. He also claimed that the silence from the Sussexes since the book came out makes Meghan look ‘guilty by association’, despite vehement claims by Mr Scobie, who is an ally of the actress, and her friends that she had nothing to do with the book.
Mr Ede said: ‘The book written by Omid Scobie is potentially a career incendiary device for Meghan. Just as Harry’s own goal of a book has proved for him, the new book by Scobie unfortunately has fuelled a fire which many had thought would die down.
‘The issue for a huge Hollywood agent is that they will find it hard to navigate the career of Meghan fearing that more will come out over time and that, with court cases looming from her sister and potentially her father, she has tarnished her reputation and could potentially damage the reputation of her agency’.
He added: ‘Meghan in the right hands is a superpower – the world’s most famous woman – and on paper she could make millions for herself and for whomever represents her. But she’s proving to be too hot to handle and, even though she hasn’t said anything about the book, she’s guilty by association and this is damaging for her and others as she plots her next career move’.
PR guru Mark Borkowski told MailOnline that Meghan’s post-Spare relaunch ‘is clearly not going to plan’.
MailOnline approached WME for comment.
The New York Post has reported claims that WME has been left ‘horrified’ about the potential damage Mr Scobie’s book may have done to the Sussexes’ rebrand.
An insider also told the Daily Mirror that WME are ‘exasperated’ by the ‘never-ending scandal’ around the Sussexes.