Billy Eichner, who voices meerkat Timon in the live action revamp of Disney’s 1994 animated film, The Lion King, revealed to Jimmy Kimmel on Thursday that the ‘intense’ protocol for meeting the royal couple at the London premiere intimidated the entire cast.
‘We were all kind of nervous, even Beyoncé,’ the comedian explained.
Meet and greet: Billy Eichner, who voices Timon in the live action revamp of Disney’s 1994 animated film, The Lion King, revealed to Jimmy Kimmel on Thursday that the ‘intense’ protocol for meeting the royal couple at the London premiere intimidated the entire cast
But he couldn’t stop himself joking, ‘They should be bowing to her’ as the closest thing the U.S. has to royalty.
Sunday’s Royal Premiere was the first time Meghan walked the red carpet as a royal with Harry.
Meghan, 37, wore a black Jason Wu dress with sheer sleeves for the event and accessorized with Aquazzura heels and a Gucci clutch while Harry, 34, looked elegant in a classic black tuxedo and crisp white shirt.
Billy continued: ‘What makes you nervous is that in the days leading up to it, they email you a protocol of how you’re supposed to greet Prince Harry and Meghan.
American royalty: Even Beyoncé, the film’s Nala, was jittery about meeting Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, now known as the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, on Sunday evening
‘You’re supposed to say, “Your Royal Highness,” you can’t speak until your hands are in a handshake with his.’
Billy also explained that his friend Jared was told to stand behind him and only speak if he was spoken to.
‘I’m not kidding!’ the actor said. ‘I was like, “Does that same rule apply to [Beyoncé’s husband] Jay-Z?” I don’t know. I have a feeling it doesn’t!’
Classic style: Meghan, 37, wore a black Jason Wu dress with sheer sleeves for the event and accessorized with Aquazzura heels while Harry, 34, looked elegant in a black tuxedo
Meet and greet: Billy said he didn’t know what to say to the royals but it turned out that he and Meghan both went to Northwestern University so they talked about their acting teachers
And he shared a tweet that showed him caught on camera preparing to say hello just before the royal couple made their way to him.
In the clip, Billy whispers to co-star Seth Rogan, ‘[I’m going to say] pleasure to meet you, I’m gonna say it, I’m gonna say it.
‘Your Highness sounds a little weird and bowing feels weird,’ the comedian recalled to Jimmy.
Best buddies: Billy appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Thursday evening
Gift for him: Jimmy presented the actor with dungarees that had ‘I’m On A Song With’ on the bib and ‘Beyonce’ down one leg . He sings Can You Feel The Love Tonight? with the pop diva
‘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,’ Billy added. ‘Although, they were very, very nice and totally chill and down to earth and lovely.’
As it turns out, Meghan and Billy went to Northwestern University around the same time, so they ended up talking about their acting professors.
Sunday’s Royal Premiere was the first time Meghan walked the red carpet as a royal with Harry. The new parents left baby Archie at home for their night out.
Animal magic: Meerkat Timon, voiced by Billy, rides on warthog Pumba’s back, voiced by Seth Rogen, as young Simba (JD McCrary) looks on in The Lion King
Comedy combo: Timon and Pumba in Disney’s hit animated movie released in 1994