TODAY | July 09, 2011
>>> hollywood is rolling out the red carpet for prince william and princess catherine . her first trip to america and the town and all of the stars are making sure it will be a memorable one. peter alexander joins us from los angeles with more on the royal couple's west coast visit.
>> good morning. catherine can say she's a california girl, arriving here for her first ever trip to the united states with, of course, her husband, the prince in tow. they will come here to santa barbara for the sport of kings, polo. the prince, william , will be playing and katherine is the one handing out the trophy.
>> attractive, young, and glamorous, william and kate stepped out on american soil friday in the city synonymous with celebrity. the fir gift, a flora bouquet in red, white, and blue. for start, the future king and queen were given hollywood 's royal treatment, the motorcade's movements tracked from the sky. and on the ground at every stop, fans showed up to get a glimpse.
>> we're fascinated with her. she's perfect in our eyes.
>> their three- day trip will blend business with pleasure, a private sunday brunch raising money for one of the prince's passions, the conservation of african wild life .
>> he has a very genuine concern for the environment and for conservation and the deep love and affection for the african continent .
>> at the santa barber polo grounds , the lawn is ready and william 's opponents promise they won't hold punches for the prince.
>> when we're on the field, it's competitive, it has to be.
>> on friday, the cowboy couple kicking off the stampede wrapped up the canadian leg of the honeymoon tour, the flawless overseas trip, charming admirers every step of the way. tonight the windsors will be welcomed by a who's who of hollywood . among the celebrities expected to hob knob at the black tie affair , nicole kidman , tom hanks , and jennifer lopez . what will the fashion princess wear? the full length gown inside that garment bag could be a sneak peek. the cash-strapped state of california has been eagerly anticipating this chance to play host.
>> so the royal couple is coming to california for three days.
>> a national tv ad invites visitors from the rest of the country to come west as well.
>> do they know we have castles.
>> it's not fish and chips, but nothing says fine american dini dining like a dog. and at pinks this, is the royal dog special. for a couple's story that could be written in hollywood , finally a chance to experience the real thing. and kate is winning rave reviews for what she wore last night for the first time wearing the dress of an american designer with a not to our female producer for this. the green dance was made by diane van firsenberg. how did i do?
>> you did as well as i would have.
>>> security may be tighter in l.a. than it was in canada . the lapd tells us the paparazzi are under strict orders not to trespass or get near the royal couple or face arrest. the nbc news royal contributor robert johnson . good morning, good to see you.
>> good to see you.
>> i was watching the pictures of the duke and duchess as they wrapped up their tour in canada . william is used in the spotlight. but catherine , a new bride, this is her first big test. does she seem comfortable with all of the attention?
>> when i met them earlier in canada , she's slightly more nervous than he is. he's a star performer. he knows exactly how to behave in front of the press. she's doing fantastically so far.
>> it seems they haven't had a private moment to themselves. they visited a cooking school . they played street hockey . they visited a homeless youth center, ottawa's national war memorial . they seem to embrace people. were you surprised at the level, the size of the crowds, the type of reaction they've gotten?
>> not really. i thought the crowds would be as big as this. i was there in canada watching his mother in 1991 . the crowds were huge then. these figures were up at the same sort of level. but they have had a bit of private time too. and off to the rockies for 24 hours . surely that's what honeymooners should be allowed to do as well.
>> in southern california , we've noted this is kate 's first trip to the united states . what can you tell us about the timing of this trip and what it means to come to the u.s.?
>> well, it's important. at the moment, we're told back in london on the briefing on this that the relations to the u.s. and britain are so important and it seemed that these are our star couple, our jfk and jackie o. if you like, and we want to cement that special relationship and these two are doing that.
>> they arrive in l.a. last night. greeted by governor brown. they attended a very private affair, a reception at the con consul general 's residence. what happened there?
>> one of the big star names was david beckham without his wife who's expecting a baby tomorrow. they had a little chat. they're quite good friends. it's a low-key event. the big event is going to be the event like jack black and quentin tarantino , they'll be there as well.
>> a lot of pomp & circumstance here. but are they going to have some down time or unofficial time on this trip?
>> i don't really think so. there's a short window here. and, in fact, when i spoke to william in canada , he said he's looking forward to getting back to north wales where he can shut himself away in a dark room.
>> robert, before i let you get away, you're the royal editor of britain's biggest selling newspaper, "the news of the world." the paper is shutting down. what are your thoughts here at the end of the chapter and certainly the embarrassment of this episode?
>> well, it's my last day as the royal editor of "the news of the world." i have contract are there, i'm sad. all of the allegations go back to things that happened ten years ago. mr. murdoch had to do what he had to do. i'm sad for the honest, decent journalists working there today. they're working to bring out the paper that after all is 168 years old and has a reputation of breaking great news stories. but it's a sad day for british journalism in my opinion.
>> appreciate you sharing your thoughts