Prince Harry has been accused of ‘snubbing’ a Royal Marines memorial service for 11 servicemen killed by the IRA to go to a Lion King premiere where he touted Meghan Markle to the boss of Disney for voiceover work.
Footage emerged of the Duke of Sussex at the London premiere last July where he collared Bob Iger and told the powerful exec that Meghan was ‘very interested’ in working with the multi-billion dollar media company.
The event took place on the same day Prince Harry, who is Captain General of the Royal Marines, was invited to honour the victims of an IRA bomb at a Royal Marines base in Deal, Kent in 1989.
Today, Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan slammed the Duke for ‘hustling’ on his wife’s behalf telling viewers: ‘This is brazen hustling by a senior royal family on the same day he should have been with the Royal Marines.’
On the red carpet of the Lion King premiere last July, the Duke of Sussex collared the powerful Disney chief and advertised ex-actress partner’s ‘interest’ in doing voiceover work. Right: Meghan embraces Beyoncé
During the hushed red carpet conversation, caught on camera by a fan, the Prince gestures to the former Suits actor and tells Iger: ‘You do know she does voiceovers?’
Iger can be heard replying: ‘Ah, I did not know that.’ Harry then responds: ‘You seem surprised. She’s really interested.’ The Disney chief then says: ‘We’d love to try. That’s a great idea.’
The footage captures Meghan mingling with her A-List friends Beyonce and Jay Z while her husband tries to secure her work.
Meghan subsequently signed deal with the Walt Disney Company in exchange for a donation to Elephants Without Borders, a wildlife charity that helps to track and protect the animals from poachers.
Today, Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan slammed the Duke for ‘hustling’ on his wife’s behalf, telling viewers: ‘Harry was invited as Captain General of the Royal Marines for when a lot of their servicemen were killed by the IRA.
‘And he said “no” and instead he went to the Disney premiere for Lion King. Rather than doing his duties he’s hustling his wife for voiceover work.
‘This is brazen hustling by a senior royal family on the same day he should have been with the Royal Marines. Now they can have their cake and eat it.
The aftermath of the 1989 IRA attack on a Royal Marine base in Deal, Kent, which killed 11
The aftermath of the 1989 IRA attack on a Royal Marine base in Deal, Kent, which killed 11
A spokeswoman from Buckingham Palace, who now manages the Duke and Duchess of Sussex after they split from Kensington Palace, said in August: ‘The Duke’s diary is set a number of months in advance and on this occasion he was unable to attend the memorial concert.’
The service was held in honour of the 11 marines who were killed and 21 injured on September 2 1989 when an IRA bomb exploded in the Royal Marines School building in Deal, Kent.
MailOnline has contacted Buckingham Palace for comment.
Prince William leaves Kensington Palace after returning to London to be with his family after meeting his brother face-to-face at Sandringham yesterday before the Queen confirmed Harry’s exit to Canada
Prince Harry (pictured leaving yesterday in the back seat), Prince William and Prince Charles left Sandringham in separate cars after more than two hours of crunch talks with the Queen
After yesterday’s family meeting at Sandringham, Her Majesty released a historic and emotionally-charged statement regretting the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s decision to split their time between Canada and the UK as they wind down their Royal duties.
The Queen has said that hammering out a viable blueprint for Harry and Meghan’s financially independent future was proving ‘complex’ and indicated more details need to be ironed out in the coming days – including their use of the Sussex title to build their business brand in North America.
And sources revealed that Prince Charles also views the matter far from concluded as he knows Harry will rely on his annual £2.3million Duchy of Cornwall payment to meet family bills.
The Duke of Sussex faced the Queen, his brother and his father (pictured leaving last night) for the first time since quitting as a senior royal
He has already lavished a small fortune on his younger son, from his wedding to the fitting out Frogmore cottage – the Windsor house he is now largely going to vacate when he uproots to North America.
A friend said: ‘He doesn’t have unlimited resources. Harry needs to know that.’
According to Daily Mail editor-at-large Richard Kay’s inside account of the Norfolk showdown:
- Harry arrived two hours early to secure a one-to-one meeting with the Queen to give his side of the story;
- Meghan was not allowed to join the discussions on a conference call for fear the conversation would not remain private;
- Sources close to Prince Charles said he warned Harry he does not have ‘unlimited resources’ to prop up his new lifestyle;
- Insiders also claimed the Prince of Wales feared his youngest son is hoping to pay the family bills using funds from the Duchy of Cornwall;
- The two-hour meeting between the Queen, Charles, William and Harry was conducted in a ‘calm’ environment.
According to friends, Harry arrived ahead of schedule to square things with his grandmother, who came into the crunch talks deeply disappointed with him and Meghan for wanting to step back from their official duties.
In last night’s statement, her sincere regret was made clear, saying she ‘would have preferred them to remain full-time working members’.
But after her one-to-one with Harry – followed by two hours of ‘calm’ discussions with him, Charles and William – Her Majesty agreed to a ‘transition period’ where the Duke and Duchess would step away from Royal engagements as they spend more time in Canada.
Meghan was barred from dialling in on the meeting from Vancouver. Palace officials said such an idea was rejected because no one knew for sure who else might have been listening in. An insider said: ‘This was a highly confidential family discussion, not a conference call.’
After the meeting concluded, Princes Charles, William and Harry left in three separate cars.
The Queen has ordered staff to find a solution ‘within days’ to the remaining sticking points, including the couple’s future funding, which is expected to impose rigid rules on their commercial activities.
What does the Queen’s statement reveal?
Today my family had very constructive discussions on the future of my grandson and his family.
The fact that the Queen issued the statement in her name and makes reference to ‘my family’ and ‘my grandson and his family’ is both deliberate and significant.
The monarch has been deeply hurt by the events of the past week – but has also been taken aback by the backlash against Harry after he issued his statement without letting her know first. The Queen wants the world to know she’s not just boss of ‘The Firm’ but also a grandmother.
My family and I are entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan’s desire to create a new life as a young family.
The Queen, as well as other senior members of the Royal Family, make clear their hurt at recent events. There’s also bewilderment that Harry, in particular, feels that he has been frozen out of plans for a future slimmed-down monarchy.
At the time of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012, when the Queen, Charles and his two sons stood on the balcony at Buckingham Palace, sources say it was made crystal clear to Harry that he was a ‘key component’ of any future royal line-up.
Royal Family members believe Harry brings a welcome joie de vivre, and without him and Meghan senior royals will be lacking.
The Queen does, however, understand his desire to break away and his refusal to bow to convention.
Although we would have preferred them to remain full-time working Members of the Royal Family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.
The Queen is deeply disappointed with Harry and Meghan shirking their Royal duties.
Harry and Meghan have made clear that they do not want to be reliant on public funds in their new lives.
The lack of detail on this speaks volumes: there is much to be sorted here.
Harry and Meghan are predicted to make millions as a global ‘brand’.
But it will not be cheap to maintain a transatlantic lifestyle for their family with at least two homes. The statement does not address whether Charles will continue to fund his son to the tune of £2million a year. It also avoids the issue of taxpayer-funded security and consular help.
The royals fear any sense of ‘cashing in’ could devalue their own brand.
It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the UK.
The royal stop-gap. In moving their son, their dogs and their household over to Canada, Harry and Meghan have already signalled to the Queen that, for the immediate future at least, there is no intention of coming back.
In this the Queen has had very little choice. She can’t order them to return, so she might as well capitulate in order to keep the peace while trying to formalise the new arrangements.
These are complex matters for my family to resolve, and there is some more work to be done, but I have asked for final decisions to be reached in the coming days.
This is an unprecedented crisis for the Family which is far from over. The Queen is desperate for the storm to pass and has asked her courtiers to double down on efforts to reach a solution.