Meghan Markle’s recent sit-down with Variety indicates one thing to royal experts: The Duchess of Sussex seems to be running the show.
The former American actress was previously named one of Variety’s Power of Women honorees. Her cover story, which was postponed during the mourning period of Queen Elizabeth II’s passing, was unveiled Wednesday.
In the interview, the 41-year-old detailed how she and husband Prince Harry work from home and share an office. The duchess also described how filmmaker Liz Garbus is working on a docuseries about their lives despite the British prince never working in the entertainment industry.
“It’s nice to be able to trust someone with our story — a seasoned director whose work I’ve long admired — even if it means it may not be the way we would have told it,” Markle explained.
“But that’s not why we’re telling it. We’re trusting our story to someone else, and that means it will go through their lens. … For me, having worked on ‘Suits,’ it’s so amazing to be around so much creative energy and to see how people work together and share their own points of view. That’s been really fun.”
Royal expert Duncan Larcombe told Fox News Digital Markle’s latest interview shows how she’s leading the couple’s brand as they continue to make their mark in America.
“From the looks of things, Meghan seems to be the driving force between the brand that she and Harry are building together,” Larcombe explained. “While she’s on the Zooms and being filmed and recorded doing important things, Harry’s either juggling outside, feeding the chickens or riding on an open-top bus with James Corden. This is very much the Meghan show we’re watching play out.”
“Harry has done some important things, and he [got] a lot of publicity when he did the Invictus Games earlier this year for wounded servicemen,” Larcombe added. “But if he reduces himself to sitting in the shadows as he did on stage in Manchester when Meghan gave her speech, then you know, it’s going to be the Meghan show, and it’s really not going to be much about Harry anymore. Apart from the fact she has to kind of drag him out once in a while just to show that she’s still part of the British royal family by marriage.”
Markle became the Duchess of Sussex when she married the British prince in 2018. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s departures from royal duties began in 2020 over what they described as the British media’s intrusions and racist attitudes toward Markle. They’ve since signed contracts with Netflix and Spotify as they launched their new lives in California.
“Meghan seems to operate on a slightly different sphere and the way that she positions herself,” said Larcombe. “What we’re seeing is Meghan building a brand, very carefully, very precisely, and extremely well. Meghan is doing very, very well. Her podcast is proving to be popular with listeners. And the likes of Variety clearly feel that Meghan sells. And, as long as that continues, then life on planet Meghan is fantastic.”
Still, Larcombe warned that while the Duke and Duchess of Sussex aren’t working royals, the palace is keeping a watchful eye on every interview they do.
“[King] Charles’ modus operandi has been to pretty much try and ignore any stuff that’s written and said about him,” said Larcombe, referring to Harry’s father. “But, on Meghan, I would be very, very surprised if he weren’t being made aware of every kind of keynote interview and commercial stuff because they have to.
“It’s the royal family brand. It is a fact Meghan is trading on the brand that King Charles is now very much in charge of. So yes, he will be watching, it will be far more in a business sense. He won’t want her to be saying things that could be damaging to the reputations of the royal family and, in particular, things that, in his opinion, are utterly untrue and unfair.
“But it’s not because he wants to go and cry and feel sad, and he’ll go and dig in the garden to make himself feel better,” Larcombe continued. “It’s a practical thing. The business of family has to be protected, and there is only so much the new king will tolerate of Meghan cashing in. It’s good to see perhaps that she’s reining back on what was beginning to look like an attack again, another offensive, in the wake of the queen’s death.”
Kinsey Schofield, royal expert and host of the “To Di For Daily” podcast, told Fox News Digital that the latest interview “is another great example of Meghan Markle’s pursuit to control the narrative.”
“Specifically if you read her reaction to The Cut interview or her lack of enthusiasm for the upcoming Netflix documentary,” Schofield said. “If she did not mold it, if she does not control the situation, she tends to frown upon it.”
The outlet pointed out to Markle that some found her previous interview with New York magazine to be “snarky.” Markle replied that the story was intended to support her podcast “Archetypes” and “focus on our other projects.”
“I’ve had some time to reflect on it,” she said. “Part of me is just really trusting, really open — that’s how I move in the world. I have to remember that I don’t ever want to become so jaded that that piece of me goes away. So despite any of those things? Onward. I can survive it.”
Schofield also felt Markle’s efforts to appear relatable in the interview, such as revealing Harry’s love of the American fast-food chain In-N-Out, appeared “exaggerated.”
“As if they are blessing In-N-Out employees with their presence [in] a city that also houses Steven Spielberg and Brad Pitt,” she said. “Meghan has had plenty of time to craft a tribute to Queen Elizabeth II, but her endorsement felt hollow.”
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex live in the coastal city of Montecito, California, with their two children.