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Princess Catherine and Prince William | Source: Getty Images
Princess Catherine and Prince William | Source: Getty Images

‘I’m Sorry’: Prince William Gave a Rare Comment on Ailing Wife Catherine at the Baftas

Taitirwa Sehliselwe Murape
Feb 21, 2024
05:45 A.M.

In an unexpected turn of events during the BAFTAs, the Prince of Wales opened up about the Princess of Wales's health and their altered film-watching tradition this year. His solo presence and heartfelt admissions underscore a season of personal challenge and hope for the royal couple.

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At the BAFTA Film Awards this year, Prince William offered rare insights into his personal life, particularly concerning his wife, Princess Catherine's health struggles. The absence of the Princess at one of the UK's most prestigious film awards was profoundly noted, with her husband stepping into the spotlight solo.

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Prince William's presence at the event underscored his dedication to the arts and his role as BAFTA president since 2010, despite the personal challenges stemming from his wife's recent major abdominal surgery. In a candid moment, he also extended an apology to Elaine Bedell, chief executive of the Southbank Centre, for his eleventh-hour decision to attend the awards ceremony alone.

Prince William at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 18, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 18, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

His apology for the "last minute" nature of his attendance conveyed the unexpected adjustments necessitated by his wife's recovery period. Traditionally seen together at the BAFTAs, the Princess's convalescence at their Windsor home after surgery last month marked a significant deviation from the couple's annual tradition.

"I’m sorry Catherine's not here. She does love the BAFTAs,” Prince William shared. During his red carpet appearance, he opened up about the impact of his wife's health on their shared cinematic interests regarding the number of nominated feature films they usually watch.

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Prince William and Princess Catherine at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 19, 2023 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William and Princess Catherine at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 19, 2023 | Source: Getty Images

"I've done the fewest I've ever done before, with my wife it's been a bit — hopefully we'll catch up," he admitted, highlighting a shift in their preparations for the awards night. “I’ve had other things on my mind,” he added.

Prince William at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 18, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the EE BAFTA Film Awards in London, England on February 18, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

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Though unable to join her doting husband at their beloved event, updates have offered a hopeful outlook on Princess Catherine's health, indicating her steady recovery since undergoing a successful operation. The family's recent half-term holiday to the Sandringham estate in Norfolk, alongside news of her improving condition, suggests a positive turn in the Princess's recuperation journey.

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Prince William's solo BAFTA appearance and his forthright commentary on their personal life reflect the delicate balance of public duty and private concerns that define the royal couple's existence. As Princess Catherine's recovery progresses, the anticipation for her return to public life and shared passions with her husband remains high.

As previously reported on February 19:

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

In a poignant display of dedication to the arts, Prince William graced the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTAs) without his wife, Princess Catherine, by his side, prompting a wave of concern among attendees and fans alike.

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

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The absence of Catherine was felt deeply, as social media buzzed with observations of the Prince's demeanor. Comments flooded in describing William as looking "tired," with others noting he seemed "aged" and "exhausted." The sentiment was a shared one, as the public echoed the feeling that it was "Not the same without Catherine!" and that the evening was missing her "beautiful sparkle."

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the 2024 BAFTAs | Source: Getty Images

Some speculated that William might look exhausted because of the toll his father and wife's health woes had taken on him in recent weeks.

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The official Instagram account for William and Catherine shared a heartfelt post, capturing the spirit of the night with a caption that read, "🎬 What a night! Honoured to be in attendance at the UK’s biggest celebration of global excellence in film #EEBAFTAs." The message was accompanied by a video of Prince William at the BAFTAs, exuding a sense of pride and commitment to his role.

Prince William and Princess Catherine at the 2023 BAFTAs as seen in an Instagram carousel | Source: Instagram.com/princeandprincessofwales/

Prince William and Princess Catherine at the 2023 BAFTAs as seen in an Instagram carousel | Source: Instagram.com/princeandprincessofwales/

This was a stark contrast to last year's BAFTAs, when Catherine and William attended the event together and were photographed with many nominees. A post on their Instagram featured a photo of William and Catherine together, extending congratulations to the BAFTA winners.

As previously reported on February 8:

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Hours ago, a video of Prince William was posted online in which he addressed the recent health news concerning King Charles III and Princess Catherine. The Prince of Wales attended a benefit during which he thanked people for their well wishes and kind words.

This is the first time Prince William has commented on the King of England's cancer diagnosis and the Princess of Wales' abdominal surgery. During the speech he gave, Prince William highlighted how much the overwhelming support the royal family has received means to them.

Prince William speaking at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William speaking at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

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He went on to divulge, "It's fair to say the past few weeks have had a rather medical focus. So I thought I'd come to an Air Ambulance function to get away from it all." The public has reacted with concern for the Prince's appearance and continues to pray for him and his family.

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Speaking of Prince William, one person noted, "His eyes look very sad." Another commented, "Prince William looked like he lost some weight. I'm sure this has been a very stressful time for him and his family."

Prince William at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Someone else stated, "William has been through so much. But he is strong." Another fan expressed, "Good to see you back Prince William. You have a lot on your plate, and still carry yourself with grace and dignity! ❤️ Praying for The King and Princess Catherine 🙏🏼🙏🏼."

Another social media user wrote, "All class, no doubt the last few weeks have taken a toll." A fan praised, "What a great speech, William, always charming and grateful 😍[sic]." Someone else encouraged, "I am 81, and I am a survivor of cancer. So there is hope for the King to survive his cancer."

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Prince William at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Prince William at the London's Air Ambulance Charity Gala Dinner in London, England on February 7, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Many believe King Charles III will emerge victorious from his cancer battle and remain faithful, including royal biographer Robert Hardman. Regarding the King's cancer, Robert disclosed, "He's a fighter and has an inner steel."

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Until then, the King's valiant eldest son has stepped up to undertake some of his father's duties. However, King Charles does not want his son to be burdened by the pressures that come along with the responsibilities of stepping up.

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According to a source who spoke to a news outlet, King Charles III has always been the kind of father who did not want to put royal pressure on his children too early. Additionally, no plans have been made yet to appoint Counsellors of State to act on the King of England's behalf.

As previously reported on February 5:

King Charles at Barnard Castle on February 15, 2018 in Durham, England Source: Getty Images

King Charles at Barnard Castle on February 15, 2018 in Durham, England Source: Getty Images

King Charles is confronting a new health challenge, following a recent procedure for an enlarged prostate. Buckingham Palace announced on Monday that the 75-year-old monarch has been diagnosed with cancer. During the procedure for benign prostate enlargement, doctors discovered the cancer as well.

King Charles III inspects the 200th Sovereign's parade at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on April 14, 2023 in Camberley, England Source: Getty Images

King Charles III inspects the 200th Sovereign's parade at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on April 14, 2023 in Camberley, England Source: Getty Images

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His Majesty has begun a regular treatment schedule and has been advised to postpone public-facing duties. He will, however, continue to handle state business and official paperwork as usual.

The King expressed his gratitude towards his medical team for their prompt intervention, made possible by his recent hospital visit. He remains optimistic about his treatment and aims to return to full public duties soon.

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Buckingham Palace's King Charles III cancer diagnosis announcement posted on February 6, 2024 | Source: Instagram/theroyalfamily

Buckingham Palace's King Charles III cancer diagnosis announcement posted on February 6, 2024 | Source: Instagram/theroyalfamily

King Charles has chosen to publicize his diagnosis to prevent speculation and hopes it will help increase public understanding of cancer. The monarch is determined to assist others affected by the disease.

The public has rallied on social media to express support and wishes for King Charles following the announcement of his cancer diagnosis. Comments like "Get well soon your Majesty, prayers for your recovery" underscore the concern and hope for the monarch's swift recuperation.

King Charles III at Windsor Castle, on December 13, 2022 in Windsor, England | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III at Windsor Castle, on December 13, 2022 in Windsor, England | Source: Getty Images

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Voices from around the world are reaching out, with one user stating, "My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family." This sentiment reflects the global community's solidarity with the British royal family during this time.

As previously reported on January 30:

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As a positive update on the health situation of the King of England, King Charles III has been discharged from The London Clinic. He walked out of the hospital, hand-in-hand with his beloved wife, Queen Camilla, on the afternoon of his discharge.

The King spent three nights at the clinic, where he received care after undergoing prostate surgery. Footage showed the happy couple, dressed smartly, smiling at the cameras as His Majesty The King waved to the public before getting into their car.

King Charles III and Queen Camilla during day 1 of the Royal Ascot in Ascot, England on June 16, 2015 | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III and Queen Camilla during day 1 of the Royal Ascot in Ascot, England on June 16, 2015 | Source: Getty Images

Before King Charles III exited the hospital, Queen Camilla visited him a few times while he was still there. People who saw the video of the King leaving the hospital reacted differently. One person expressed, "He looks very thin."

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Another said, "Looks very healthy. But he needs more rest. Hope he finds a quiet spot for a few weeks. Scotland would be perfect 👌😊," while a third social media user who was pleased by the King's appearance stated, "Impressed that His Majesty is walking so smoothly."

King Charles III at the 70th Anniversary of VE Day event in London, England on May 10, 2015 | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III at the 70th Anniversary of VE Day event in London, England on May 10, 2015 | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III's hospital release comes just after it was announced that the Princess of Wales also left The London Clinic and returned home, where she continues to recover from her abdominal surgery.

As we continue to follow this unfolding story, a look back at our previous article provides further insights into the Queen's unwavering support for her husband, the King, as previously reported on January 29:

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Since his hospitalization, footage and pictures of Queen Camilla visiting her husband, King Charles III, have sparked online buzz. So far, the Queen has been seen visiting His Majesty The King three times.

Following his corrective surgery, King Charles III has been recovering at the same hospital where the Princess of Wales, Princess Catherine, is. During her first visit, a smiling Queen Camilla adorned a navy dress as she left the hospital and entered her car.

Queen Camilla seen visiting King Charles III at The London Clinic in London, England on January 26, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Queen Camilla seen visiting King Charles III at The London Clinic in London, England on January 26, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

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A video of her second visit showed her royal driver and security team escorting her from The London Clinic. She was dressed in a green and white ensemble. Many had differing opinions when social media users saw Queen Camilla during her visits.

Queen Camilla seen leaving The London Clinic in London, England on January 27, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Queen Camilla seen leaving The London Clinic in London, England on January 27, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

One person felt strongly about Queen Camilla's visits being her obligation as the King's wife. They expressed, "These shouldn't be the news headline because it was her duty as his wife to visit the husband." Another asserted, "Camilla should say very short words concerning her husband. Bizarre." Someone else noted, "Her eyes aren't smiling."

Queen Camilla spotted visiting King Charles III at The London Clinic in London, England on January 28, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

Queen Camilla spotted visiting King Charles III at The London Clinic in London, England on January 28, 2024 | Source: Getty Images

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Despite the opinions of some, others praised Queen Camilla and continued to send their well wishes to the King. One fan gushed, "The King is lucky to have such a devoted Queen by his side ❤️❤️❤️❤️."

Another wrote, "Well, I noticed she had a smile on her face. I hope all is well. Hope the King gets discharged soon." Someone else stated, "He has always been the love of her life and vice versa."

Queen Camilla and King Charls III during the third day of their visit to Wales in Builth Wells, Wales on  July 4, 2018 | Source: Getty Images

Queen Camilla and King Charls III during the third day of their visit to Wales in Builth Wells, Wales on July 4, 2018 | Source: Getty Images

Before her recent trips to the hospital, Queen Camilla gave a quick update on how her beloved husband has been doing since his operation. In a TikTok video, she divulged, "He's fine, thank you very much. He's looking forward to getting back to work."

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The 15-second-long video ends with the Queen walking away from the person who asked her how King Charles III was doing and showed her going to address a group of children.

As previously reported on January 26:

King Charles III waves as he attends the Royal Cornwall Show in Wadebridge, United Kingdom on June 7, 2018. | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III waves as he attends the Royal Cornwall Show in Wadebridge, United Kingdom on June 7, 2018. | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III and Princess of Wales Kate Middleton are facing health issues, leading to the postponement of their royal engagements. Kate underwent a planned abdominal surgery and will be in a London hospital for two weeks from January 16, 2024.

King Charles III kisses the Princess of Wales Kate Middleton at the premiere of the James Bond 007 film "No Time to Die" in West London on September 28, 2021. | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III kisses the Princess of Wales Kate Middleton at the premiere of the James Bond 007 film "No Time to Die" in West London on September 28, 2021. | Source: Getty Images

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Both senior royals have had to reschedule their previously arranged public commitments in the coming weeks. Kate, married to Prince William, the heir to the throne, is expected to make a full recovery.

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Prince William in a black and white picture posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

Prince William in a black and white picture posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

Princess Catherine in a black and white picture posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

Princess Catherine in a black and white picture posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

Princess Catherine cheering for Prince William at an awards ceremony posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

Princess Catherine cheering for Prince William at an awards ceremony posted on December 6, 2022 | Source: Instagram/princeandprincessofwales

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King Charles III was also set to undergo a corrective procedure on January 26, 2024. Buckingham Palace announced on January 17, 2024, that the procedure was for the King's enlarged prostate but that his condition was benign.

The King was photographed ahead of his planned operation on his way from Clarence House to a London clinic. He went into the same clinic where Kate underwent surgery and even passed by to visit his daughter-in-law. After he was admitted, a spokesperson for Buckingham Palace said the King thanked all who sent him good wishes.

King Charles III attends the presentation of Addresses by both Houses of Parliament in Westminster Hall, central London on September 12, 2022. | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III attends the presentation of Addresses by both Houses of Parliament in Westminster Hall, central London on September 12, 2022. | Source: Getty Images

The public has sent love and prayers to the Princess and the King as they start their respective recovery journeys. "❤️‍🙏 to both," one person wrote. The public also wished the two a "speedy recovery." "Wishing King Charles and Princess Catherine a speedy recovery. God Save The King and Catherine of Wales," another person said.

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Princess of Wales Kate Middleton attends the Christmas Morning Service at Sandringham Church in Sandringham, Norfolk on December 25, 2023. | Source: Getty Images

Princess of Wales Kate Middleton attends the Christmas Morning Service at Sandringham Church in Sandringham, Norfolk on December 25, 2023. | Source: Getty Images

The Princess and His Majesty's health updates were given to avoid speculation if they both fail to attend upcoming events or if some occasions are canceled. A spokesperson for King Charles III also announced the postponement of his public engagements during his recovery.

Several events on the royal family's agenda, including visits by foreign dignitaries and members of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's Cabinet to Dumfries House in Scotland, have already been rescheduled.

King Charles III and the Princess of Wales Kate Middleton during their visit to a training site for arts and culture in London, England on February 3, 2022. | Source: Getty Images

King Charles III and the Princess of Wales Kate Middleton during their visit to a training site for arts and culture in London, England on February 3, 2022. | Source: Getty Images

The Princess of Wales and the King are expected to recover fully and resume their public engagements. Still, as they recuperate, they can count on the public's well-wishes for a speedy recovery.

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