Oprah Winfrey Says Meghan Markle Is 'Being Portrayed Unfairly': 'She Has a Wonderful, Loving Heart'

Stephanie Petit

Oprah Winfrey is standing up for Meghan Markle.

The television mogul, who just announced her partnership with Prince Harry in creating a mental health series launching on Apple next year, appeared on CBS This Morning to talk about the project on Wednesday, and conversation turned to the royal mom-to-be.

“I think she’s being portrayed unfairly, and I feel that if people really knew her they would know that she is not only everything we perceive of her in being graceful and dynamic in holding that position, but she just has a wonderful, warm, giving, loving heart,” Winfrey, 65, said of the Duchess of Sussex, 37. “I think it’s very unfair.”

Gayle King, who attended Meghan’s baby shower in New York City, then added: “She’s very kind. She doesn’t seem to buy into [her bad press] though.”

A month after Meghan shared that she does not feed into negativity by looking at Twitter, Winfrey reiterated that the royal mom-to-be “does not read anything.”

“I think that’s remarkable that despite everything that’s going on she does not read anything,” she said.

Winfrey attended the couple’s royal wedding in May — and has even spent some time with Doria Ragland, Meghan’s mom. She reportedly invited Doria, a social worker and yoga instructor in Los Angeles, to do yoga at her California home.

“She’s great at yoga, so I said, ‘Bring your yoga mat and your sneaks in case we just want to do yoga on the lawn,’ ” the media mogul told Entertainment Tonight. “So one of the bags was a yoga mat and the other was lunch.”

IAN WEST/AFP/Getty Images; CHRIS JACKSON/AFP/Getty Images

Winfrey also cleared up any potential misgivings about the duo’s hangout after Doria was spotted leaving her home carrying a few bags.

“She said, ‘I love kumquats,’ and I said, ‘I have a kumquat tree! You want some kumquats?’ So it was a basket of kumquats, people,” she said. “For all of the people who said I am getting her gifts and I’m trying to bribe her for an interview, they were kumquats. If kumquats can get you an interview, I’m all for it!”

Oprah Winfrey at the royal wedding | Ian West/PA Wire

Winfrey is not alone in coming to Meghan’s defense after intense media scrutiny. After maintaining their silence for nearly two years, five women who form an essential part of Meghan’s inner circle spoke exclusively to PEOPLE in February to “stand up against the global bullying we are seeing and speak the truth about our friend.”

“Meg has silently sat back and endured the lies and untruths,” her former costar said. With Meghan and her husband, Prince Harry, expecting their first child this spring, “we worry about what this is doing to her and the baby,” added the costar. “It’s wrong to put anyone under this level of emotional trauma, let alone when they’re pregnant.”

George Clooney also recently slammed the way the Duchess of Sussex has been treated since joining the royal family and compared her experience to that of the late Princess Diana.

The actor told Good Morning Britain, “I think it’s a little unfair at times when – I’ve seen it when the press can turn on you for sort of ridiculous reasons and for almost nothing, and it seemed to me to be a little unjust since [Meghan] hadn’t done anything except just happen to live her life.”

He added that Meghan is “a really kind and smart and intelligent young woman.”

George Clooney; Prince Harry and Meghan Markle | Mike Marsland/Getty; Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty

Prince Harry and Winfrey are co-creating a series of documentaries for Apple next year as “partners, co-creators and executive producers,” they announced early Wednesday.

“I truly believe that good mental health — mental fitness — is the key to powerful leadership, productive communities and a purpose-driven self,” Harry, 34, said in an announcement on the new @sussexroyal Instagram page.

“It is a huge responsibility to get this right as we bring you the facts, the science and the awareness of a subject that is so relevant during these times,” the prince added. “Our hope is that this series will be positive, enlightening and inclusive — sharing global stories of unparalleled human spirit fighting back from the darkest places, and the opportunity for us to understand ourselves and those around us better. I am incredibly proud to be working alongside Oprah on this vital series.”

Winfrey spoke about how the partnership came to be on CBS This Morning.

“I was having a conversation with him. I actually asked him, ‘What do you think are the most important issues facing the world right now?’ And he said, ‘There are two: climate change and mental wellness, mental fitness.’ As you know, he’s spoken about his own issues and what he went through after his mother died and how being able to talk about it has benefitted him so. And so it’s a passion of his,” she explained. “At the end of the conversation I said, ‘I’m going to be doing this thing with Apple. It’s a big concern of mine too. I want to try to erase the stigma.’ And he said at the end of the conversation, ‘if there’s anything I can do to help.’ And I go, ‘As a matter of fact…’ “

The TV star added that they’ve had several “secret meetings” in London to collaborate on the project.

She said, “I think it’s going to make—our hope is it’s going to have an impact on reducing the stigma and allowing people to know they’re not alone and being able to speak up about it and being able to identify it for themselves and their friends.”