Meghan Markle Snubbed by Role Model Emma Watson During London Visit—Book

Meghan Markle was denied a meeting with actress Emma Watson during a United Nations event before she became a royal—and "the snub was mortifying," according to a new biography.

The Duchess of Sussex made an appearance at a "HeForShe" initiative put on by U.N. Women where Watson was a speaker and asked to meet the fellow actress, according to Revenge: Meghan, Harry and the war between the Windsors.

However, author Tom Bower described how the Hollywood A-lister and activist turned down the request from Meghan, who at the time was starring in Suits but whose relationship with Prince Harry had not yet started.

The book reads: "During a trip to London [Meghan] went to a small meeting addressed by Emma Watson, her hero and role model. At the end, she asked to meet Watson. The actress rejected the request. The snub was mortifying. Watson's rebuff was not mentioned when Meghan described her UN role in The Tig. 'I was in London,' she wrote to her followers, 'to support Emma Watson in her HeForShe Initiative for UN Women.'"

Meghan Markle and Emma Watson
A new book claims that Meghan Markle was "snubbed" by actress Emma Watson at a U.N. event before she was in a relationship with Prince Harry. Above, Meghan (L) is photographed at a Dove Self-Esteem Project event in Toronto on October 6, 2015. Watson (R) is seen at Wimbledon in London on July 14, 2018. Meghan was also in attendance that day. George Pimentel/WireImage and Clive Mason/Getty Images

An archived version of an article by Meghan on her former lifestyle blog, The Tig, read: "But it was here at the HeForShe campaign, the call to action for boys and men all over the world to support this gender solidarity movement, that I sat directly across from UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador, Emma Watson, as she delivered an inimitable speech on feminism.

"Emma, at just 24 years old, brought to the forefront the clear facts of how crippling it is for a society to have women undervalued and marginalized, and how that devastates not just the female population, but the entire population."

The duchess has, however, since then racked up many more celebrity friends, holidaying with the likes of George Clooney and Elton John and with vocal support from Serena Williams, among others.

Meghan was at the time U.N. Women's Advocate for Women's Political Participation and Leadership, a role that played a key role in discussions about Meghan's feminism and philanthropy years later.

News of Harry and Meghan's relationship in October 2016 fired the starting gun on a feverish search back through Meghan's life and career to date by media eager at the prospect of an exciting new addition to the royal family.

Among examples was a speech Meghan gave to a U.N. Women conference in 2015 when she denounced the slow rate of progress in pursuing equality.

She said: "U.N. Women, as you guys know, has defined the year 2030 as the expiration date for gender inequality. Here's what's staggering: the studies show that, at the current rate, the elimination of gender inequality won't be possible until 2095.

"That's another 80 years from now. When it comes to women's political participation and leadership the percentage of female parliamentarians globally has only increased by 11 percent since 1995.

"Eleven percent in 20 years. Come on, this has to change."

Bower's book was widely anticipated to be critical of the duchess owing to his longstanding reputation for tearing down his subjects, such as politicians, business tycoons and Prince Charles.

He also gave interviews in the run-up to publication suggesting it might make uncomfortable reading for Meghan.

In May, the author told GB News: "It has turned out to be...a very, very hard slog because people were pretty reluctant to speak and she and her lawyers had done very well to keep people silent, but I got through [to] enough.

"And it's a great story. It is an astonishing story of a woman who came from nothing and is now a world figure and has trampled on all those others on the way which is classic for the sort of people I always choose, whether it's a politician or a tycoon.

"The victims are keen to talk and they have spoken. And it's a really gripping story."

Early extracts, published in The Times of London, suggested Queen Elizabeth II was relieved Meghan did not attend Prince Philip's funeral.

The book read: "In Windsor Castle the Queen was preparing to face the public on one of the saddest days of her life. Philip had been her rock for the previous 70 years. To comply with COVID restrictions she would grieve alone inside the chapel.

"'Thank goodness Meghan is not coming,' the monarch said in a clear voice to her trusted aides.

"Harry's presence remained a problem. As a private citizen stripped of his military titles he could not dress in uniform. To minimize the embarrassment for both Harry and Andrew, who was mired in allegations of sexual sleaze, all the male members of the royal family dressed in morning suits."

A source close to the queen told Newsweek it was unlikely Elizabeth would have been thinking about anything other than Prince Philip in the days before his funeral on April 17, 2021.

Elsewhere, Bower suggested Meghan was envious of Kate while Prince Harry's contempt for Prince William and his sister-in-law was comparable to Meghan's for her father Thomas Markle and half-sister Samantha Markle.

Revenge reads: "No other member of the royal family had suffered as much embarrassment from their own family as Meghan.

"There was some equivalence in Meghan's contempt for her half-siblings, Samantha and Thomas, and now Harry's for Kate and William, in particular."

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