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Meghan Markle Not the First Famous Actress to Marry Her Prince
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1 Dec 2017 05:43 PM EST

-by Laura Tucker, Staff Writer; Image: Meghan Markle (Image Source: Genevieve via Wikimedia Commons)

In more recent years, we were used to thinking of the Royal family as aristocratic, British, etc. But the newest member of the Royal family in Britain is quite different, but not altogether different from what we've seen at other times.

It shows how far the world has come. Meghan Markle is a biracial, divorced TV actress and just got engaged to Prince Harry, youngest son of Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana.

She's not the first American divorcée to marry into the family, but she'll be the first to be included. King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in 1936 when he married Wallis Simpson, an American divorcée.

Markle is the first woman of color, having a black mother and a white father, but she is not the first American actress. She is the first to join the British royal family, but actress Grace Kelly married into the Grimaldi family in Monaco in 1956.

Princess Grace appeared on the New York City stage, on television dramas, and in the films Mogambo, The Country Girl, High Noon, Dial M for Murder, Rear Window, To Catch a Thief, and High Society.

She retired from acting at the young age of 26 when she married Prince Rainier. Together they had three children: Caroline, Albert II, and Stephanie. Princess Grace had dual citizenship.

She died in 1982 after suffering a stroke while driving home. She was just 52.

Markle has starred on Suits since 2011 but appeared as a guest star in numerous series before that and appeared in a few Hallmark movies and a handful of films as well.

Yet she won't be leaving her series on the USA Network high and dry. They've actually been preparing for the inevitable and were already planning on writing her out of the series.

"I knew from a year ago that this relationship was burgeoning," said Suits creator Aaron Korsh. "And I had a decision to make because I didn't want to intrude and ask her, 'Hey, what's going on, and what are you going to do?'"

"So collectively, with the writers, we decided to take a gamble that these two people were in love, and it was going to work out," he continued. "What we decided to do (was) say, 'Look, I would rather have good things happen to Meghan in her life,' which would likely mean her leaving the show. So let's plan on that, and it's much easier to undo that, if it came to it, than to just plan on her staying forever and then finding out she's going to go."

Markle and Prince Harry are set to be married next May, and she will officially leave the series at the end of season seven, which will resume in 2018.

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