The Duchess of Sussex and Billy Eichner were theatre majors at Northwestern University around the same time, and they chatted about their teachers at The Lion King premiere

By Stephanie Petit
July 23, 2019 12:33 PM
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Meghan Markle knows life can be unpredictable!

The Duchess of Sussex recently attended the London premiere of The Lion King with husband Prince Harry, where she spent some time chatting with Billy Eichner, who voices Timon in the remake of the beloved Disney film. Turns out, the two had plenty to chat about.

“Meghan and I both went to college together — we were both theatre majors at Northwestern. We didn’t know each other when we were there, but we were there at the same time,” Eichner explained on Today with Hoda and Jenna on Tuesday while watching a clip of their meeting. “In the middle of this huge royal premiere you’re looking at, right there we’re having a very casual conversation about our acting teachers at Northwestern.”

After Meghan congratulated the actor and comedian on his successful Hollywood career, Eichner returned the compliment.

“And she said, ‘Well, things took a little turn,’ ” Eichner recalled with a laugh.

“She was lovely, and they were so cool and down to earth,” he added. “You would never know that they’re royals.”

Eichner previously chatted about the interaction on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, sharing that the “intense” protocol for meeting the royal couple had the entire cast intimidated. Not even Beyoncé, the film’s Nala, was immune!

Samir Hussein/WireImage; VICKIE FLORES/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

“We were all kind of nervous, even Beyoncé,” the Billy on the Street star, 40, explained. “What makes you nervous is that the days leading up to it, they email you a protocol of how you’re supposed to greet Prince Harry and Meghan.”

He continued, “You’re supposed to say, ‘Your Royal Highness,’ you can’t speak until your hands are in a handshake with his.”

Eichner also explained that his friend Jared was told to stand behind him and only speak if he was addressed directly.

“I’m not kidding!” the actor said. “I was like, ‘Does that same rule apply to JAY-Z?’ I don’t know. I have a feeling it doesn’t!”

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Beyonce and JAY-Z
NIKLAS HALLE'N/AFP/Getty

Just before the royal couple made their way to Eichner, he was caught on camera preparing to say hello.

In the clip, Eichner, who shared the video on Twitter — whispers to costar Seth Rogan about what he might say to the new parents.

“[I’m going to say] pleasure to meet you,” he says in the video. “I’m gonna say it, I’m gonna say it.”

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“Your Highness sounds a little weird and bowing feels weird,” the comedian recalled to Kimmel. “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.”

“I completely freaked out,” Eichner added. “Although, they were very, very nice and totally chill and down to earth and lovely.”