Meghan Markle ‘struggled to balance Hollywood glamour with third-world reality’

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have signed a multi-year production deal with Netflix that will have the two royals producing exclusive films and series for the streaming service. This includes scripted series, docu-series, documentaries, features and children’s programming. Prince Harry and Meghan may appear on camera for some of the projects, but the former Suits actress reportedly has no plans to return to acting.

In an official statement, Netflix said that the two are “committed to highlighting diverse voices in front of and behind the camera” and “to diverse hiring practices for the key roles they are actively filling at their production company”.

In January, Harry and Meghan announced that they were “stepping back” from their roles as senior members of the Royal Family, and would split time between the UK and North America.

The decision to step down came after months of speculation the Duchess could not settle into royal life.

Since then, the two have purchased a home in California, and dabbled in the entertainment industry. The Netflix deal appears to be the next step in that evolution.

According to unearthed reports, though, Meghan does not seem to enjoy the Hollywood glamour as much as people think.

In a 2016 essay for Elle UK, the Duchess opened up about the challenges she faced with trying to balance her Hollywood career with her philanthropic efforts.

She wrote about the internal struggle she had after spending time in Rwanda for her charity work, where she spent time at the Gihembe refugee camp and being offered the opportunity to attend the BAFTAS.

Despite having a red carpet appearance sponsored by a high-end jewellers, who offered to provide her with jewels, dress as well as transportation and accommodation, Meghan could not get her head around it.

She said: “My brain, heart and spirit couldn’t shift gears that quickly, from the purpose-driven work I had been doing all week in Rwanda to the polished glamour of an awards show. ‘No,’ my heart said. And it wasn’t a soft whisper; it was a lion’s roar.

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“I looked out the car window and saw a world of verdant beauty that had been riddled with genocide and unrest only 22 years ago, but had recovered with a decisive choice to overcome.

“The rolling fields, the goats and thump-thump of the ground as we drove – to me, it was bucolic bliss. It was love at its core.”

Meghan continued: “And in that moment, my gut said no because while my two worlds can coexist, I’ve learned that being able to keep a foot in both is a delicate balance.

“No, they are not mutually exclusive but guiding my heart through the swinging pendulum from Hollywood fantasy to third-world reality is challenging in its own way.”

The former actress also paid tribute to her parents, stating that she had the “most hard-working father”, and they had both raised her to be a “global citizen”.

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She also revealed that her parents had not grown up rich, but when they could afford it they would spend their money giving back to communities.

She added: “It’s what I grew up seeing, so it’s what I grew up being: a young adult with a social consciousness to do what I could and speak up when I knew something was wrong.”

Referring to finding her Prince in the essay, Meghan concluded: “With fame comes opportunity, but it also includes responsibility – to advocate and share, to focus less on glass slippers and more on pushing through glass ceilings.

“And, if I’m lucky enough, to inspire.”

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