Elton John was ‘surprised’ by Meghan and Harry’s royal exit before Furnish collaboration

'Striking' similarities between Meghan Markle and Princess Diana

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Meghan and Harry are currently busy working on the various projects they have been contracted to make. Among them includes some blockbuster shows for Netflix, as part of the £109million deal they struck last year. The pair have so far announced just two works between them.

While Harry is creating a documentary that will follow competitors of the Invictus Games as they prepare for next year’s competition at The Hague, Meghan is fashioning an animated series called ‘Pearl’.

Pearl has drawn much attention, both good and bad, and follows a 12-year-old girl’s “heroic adventures” as she talks to noteworthy women from history.

Helping her to produce the work is David Furnish, Sir Elton John’s husband.

Himself a filmmaker, Mr Furnish has offered a crucial hand in Pearl’s creation and serves as an executive producer, since describing Meghan as “amazing” to work with.

The pair are no strangers, as Meghan and Harry are close friends of Sir Elton, having previously been flown out to his French Riviera mansion in a private jet.

Sir Elton was also particularly close to Harry’s late mother, Princess Diana.

Sir Elton tonight appears on Later with Jools Holland to talk about his new album, Lockdown Sessions, which sees him team up with Dua Lipa, Charlie Puth and Stevie Wonder among others.

Despite being a close friend of Meghan and Harry, he voiced surprise at the news that they had decided to leave the Firm and start life anew in North America.

Shortly after the departure announcement in January 2020, a spokesperson told the MailOnline: “The first that Sir Elton heard of the details and timing of Harry and Meghan’s plans were when the announcement went up on their Instagram.”

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But the bombshell announcement that rocked the Royal Family “came as a surprise to him,” the spokesperson added.

Sir Elton has been described as a “rock” to the couple.

When they faced intense pressure after using his private jet to fly to his £15million home overlooking the Promenade des Anglais, he was quick to their defence.

At the time, Meghan and Harry had used four private jets within 11 days.

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Private jets are the single most harmful means of transport to the environment, and appear to run in contrast to the ethos of Harry’s environmental-oriented endeavours.

Sir Elton, however, explained he had provided his own jet to “maintain a high level of much-needed protection”, adding that he had paid to carbon offset their trip.

Many organisations including Green Peace claim carbon offsetting doesn’t actually work.

They say offsetting doesn’t cancel or offset the emissions to which they are linked, as the amount of CO2 is still spewed into the atmosphere, while it often takes 20 years for trees that are paid for to grow anywhere near the level needed to capture the CO2 emitted.

Regardless, Sir Elton remains an important player in the Duke and Duchess’ life.

A royal insider told the Mirror last year: “Elton speaks to Harry and Meghan every day.

“He’s an inspiration, an almost ‘motherly’ figure.

“He is a constant support, especially to Meghan, and is very protective of them both.”

Meanwhile, in recent weeks Mr Furnish lapped the praise on Meghan.

Speaking at the HELLO! Inspiration Awards, he said: “She’s a fantastic collaborator, an amazing leader.

“And we’re just very, very excited to be working with, you know, someone is as influential and as supportive as Netflix.”

Later with Jools Holland airs on BBC Two at 9:30 tonight.

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