When Meghan Markle married into the royal family in 2018, it was expected that she and husband Prince Harry would always do their life’s work together as members of the Firm. Where, sure, they’d each have their own patronages and go on their own engagements occasionally, essentially Meghan was joining the family business by marrying Harry and anticipated always working side-by-side with him to accomplish a shared goal of furthering the monarchy.
Then, January 2020 happened.
After Harry and Meghan stepped back as working members of the royal family, they continued to work in tandem, establishing Archewell and inking deals with Netflix and Spotify together. Professionally, for the most part, where there was one, there was the other. Now, Meghan has signed with powerhouse talent agency William Morris Endeavor (WME); Harry did not. It seems, as Marie Claire reported on recently, that Meghan is poised to become a “one-woman show” in the near future; for his part, Harry has projects of his own that he’s dialing into.
According to OK, Meghan is being advised that there is “no future” professionally with Harry and that, according to an advisor, she needs to break away from the colloquial “Brand Sussex.”
“They feel that if Meghan does more on her own, she’ll have more opportunities to save her career,” a source said. By “save her career” they’re likely referring to bouncing back from the collapse of the $20 million Spotify deal she and Harry signed in 2020, which fell apart last month to much publicity.
“Meghan is distraught over this Spotify snub and the fallout that has followed,” the insider said. “It’s totally knocked her sideways. She can’t believe she’s been attacked so viciously and so publicly by one of their execs, and to be labeled ‘grifters’ is an utterly humiliating and gut-wrenching all-time low—it’s served as a brutal reality check that things really do need to change to save their popularity.”
At WME, the lead agent on Meghan’s team is Ari Emanuel, and, as OK previously reported, Meghan is being advised to relaunch herself by rebranding herself professionally as her own person, not as one half of the Sussexes. Offers for Meghan sans Harry have been allegedly “pouring in,” and Meghan is “meticulously looking them over,” OK reports. Rumored projects include everything from the relaunch of Meghan’s popular blog “The Tig” to a memoir of her own to a career as a highly paid influencer. It seems Meghan will lean towards showbiz-type work, while Harry will focus on more humanitarian efforts; for his part, Harry will release his Netflix documentary, Heart of Invictus, next month, and is also rumored to be working on a solo documentary for Netflix about Africa. He also went solo for his memoir, Spare, which was a bestseller for Penguin Random House earlier this year.
“The agency will be focusing on building out her business ventures across multiple facets of the agency and its broader ecosystem, including film and television production, brand partnerships, and more,” WME wrote on its Instagram.
The sky is the limit for Meghan, who can more or less pick her ticket and choose her adventure, but one line of work she is not looking to get back into? Acting, apparently. Instead, she’ll focus her efforts behind the camera, producing and creating content.
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Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.
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