‘Harry & Meghan: Getting Away From The Palace’ EXCLUSIVELY with HL, the actresses discussed playing the royal couple, the ’emotional weight’ of Harry and Meghan’s separation from the royal family, and more.
In the new Lifetime film Harry & Meghan: Escaping the Palace, Sydney Morton and Jordan Dean play Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, respectively. Prior to the premiere, HollywoodLife spoke with Sydney and Jordan EXCLUSIVELY about handling Harry and Meghan’s tangled lives, their decision to quit the royal family, and the global repercussions of that decision.
Sydney told HollywoodLife, “I would say it was really emotional for me.” “I know I hadn’t spent nearly enough time thinking about and internalizing their experience. I mean, it’s always been such a big deal. It had been reduced to headlines and talking points, so feeling the weight of it all, the emotional weight of it, was a big shock.
It definitely provided me a new perspective, one that I believe most people don’t have because they don’t take the time to actually sit down and internalize and think about how it would feel to lose your mother the way Harry did, to be an American, to marry into the royal family under such scrutiny. It’s something most of us can’t comprehend and don’t bother to try. So that was a surprisingly emotional task to undertake.”
“I felt this comparable weight — if you will — while playing someone who has lived that life and has had pretty much an inconceivable catastrophe happen to him at a young age and is still coping with the ripple effects as a man,” Jordan continued. There’s a lot to think about as an actor from that. There are a lot of notes to play on the piano, if you will, and I believe these are folks with a lot of depth.
And, once again, it was the prospect of delving into that inner depth that piqued my interest, especially since Harry was openly discussing his emotional journey while we were filming. There’s a lot of research you can conduct that won’t help me at all. But then, as we were recording, he started talking about his experience openly and honestly. It was just additional knowledge that I could take and try to interpret how that would influence me, Jordan, and then try to apply it when I was working with Sydney.”
Sydney and Jordan were confined for two weeks before filming the Lifetime movie, which allowed them to “truly immerse ourselves in all things Harry and Meghan.” Sydney emphasized that she worked hard to get Meghan’s “essence” and “point of view” since she believes they were both aiming for “less of an impression or character and more of a very grounded picture of how they move through the world.”
When Harry and Meghan revealed that they would be stepping down as senior royals in January 2020, they startled the world. They’ve subsequently relocated to Los Angeles with their children, Archie and Lilibet, and begun a new life. After playing the pair in Escaping the Palace, HollywoodLife asked Sydney and Jordan how they feel about Harry and Meghan’s decision.
Sydney stated, “I try not to make other people’s families my business.” “It isn’t my concern.” I have faith that people are doing what they believe is best for their families. That, I believe, is very true in this case. I can’t image how stressful it must be. I can’t imagine what each of them has gone through, so I don’t think it’s a decision you make lightly. I believe they did what they thought was best for them, and I can only express my admiration.
Jordan explained that his “approach to this whole issue is not to criticize them but to discover the truth in the screenplay that we were given and utilize the text as sort of a guide in how we approached it.” But, again, I think not judging them, not letting my personal perspective influence how I approach the role and just keeping it separate.”