The Lion King star Billy Eichner has revealed the cast had to follow strict protocol when greeting Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at the film’s London premiere.
During an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the actor said the cast were “nervous” to meet the royal couple – including Beyoncé.
Recalling the moment the cast met the Duke and Duchess, Billy joked: “Prince Harry and Meghan Markle came, and Beyoncé was there, and Sir Elton John was there. And I was there, randomly. And it was great, and we were all kind of nervous, even Beyoncé.”
Jimmy then asked, “Really? They should be bowing to her!”
Billy replied: “That’s true, actually. She’s our American royalty. But what makes you nervous is in the days leading up to it, they email you a protocol of how you’re supposed to greet Prince Harry and they’re very intense about it. I’m not kidding.”
The actor, who plays Timon in The Lion King’s live-action remake, explained: “You’re supposed to say, ‘Your Royal Highness.’ You can’t speak until your hands are in a handshake with his.”
“My plus one, my guest I brought with me, my very good friend Jared, they said he had to stand behind me and not speak unless he was spoken to. I’m not kidding. I was like, ‘Does that same rule apply to JAY-Z?’ I have a feeling it doesn’t.”
Billy said he “got really nervous” when it finally came time to meet Meghan and Harry, and he started to panic about what he should say to them.
He said: “‘Your Royal Highness’ sounds a little weird, and bowing feels weird. I don’t even know what they want you to do, and in my head, I’m like, ‘What do you call her?’ I kept thinking she’s Princess Markle, but that sounds like a character on Super Mario Brothers. They don’t really call her that.”
“Anyway, I completely freaked out, although they were very, very nice and totally chill and down to earth, and lovely.”
“She was really cool, and Harry was great too. They were very nice, lovely, beautiful looking people,” he added.