Funnyman Billy Eichner plays Timon the meerkat in The Lion King. Although his knack for comedy was enough for him to confidently play the part, the comedian revealed that he was “panicking” before meeting the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
The actor recalled the moments leading up to his first encounter with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on Good Morning America.
“You can’t see, but I’m standing next to Seth Rogen,” Eichner said referring to a video he shared of meeting the royals at The Lion King premiere in London. “Before you meet them, they e-mail you this whole list of very official protocol of what you’re supposed to say, and your royal highness and don’t speak until you’re spoken to, but we didn’t really know if they wanted us to do that. It feels a little strange and we’re American, so I was panicking about what to say.”
As for the moment itself, Eichner says:
“I was turning to Seth, I was like, ‘What are you going to say? What are you going to say? What are you going to say?’ I think just muttered, ‘Oh, pleasure to meet you,’ and shook hands. They were lovely.”
“And Meghan and I went to Northwestern [University]. We went to the same school. So we just ended up having this very casual conversation about our acting teachers,” he added.
Eichner also revealed that even Beyonce herself was nervous about meeting the royals in his recent appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
“Prince Harry and Meghan Markle came, and Beyonce was there, and Sir Elton John was there. And I was there, randomly,” quipped Eichner. “And it was great, and we were all kind of nervous, even Beyonce.”