- Piers Morgan claims Meghan Markle ghosted him after they met up for platonic drinks in 2016.
- He went from writing that she’s got “beauty” and “brains” to being one of her most vocal critics.
- See how they first met over Twitter, and their one-sided fallout, in Insider’s full timeline.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Piers Morgan recently quit his TV show, “Good Morning Britain,” after reportedly refusing to apologize to Meghan Markle on air.
The British morning show had received more than 41,000 complaints, including one from Markle herself reportedly, following Morgan’s accusations that the Duchess of Sussex was lying about having suicidal thoughts during her time with the royal family.
According to Morgan, he and Markle were once “friends” after they began following one another on Twitter and met up for platonic drinks.
Keep reading for a full timeline of the two celebrities’ initial friendship, and how Morgan went from publicly praising Markle to regularly disparaging her on TV and in his Daily Mail columns.
Markle followed him back, and sent him a direct message, writing that she was a “big fan” of his.
Morgan had been a judge on the reality competition show, “America’s Got Talent,” from 2006 to 2011, and returned as a guest judge in 2015.
He also had become a notable TV host on US channels by this time, and joined “Good Morning Britain” in the fall of 2015.
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) September 15, 2015
The Elle magazine essay Markle wrote described her experience growing up with a white father and Black mother, and how it shaped her sense of self.
Markle also shared several anecdotes about racist behavior she and her mother had encountered over the years.
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) June 30, 2016
Though Markle has since deleted her Twitter account, which means any public correspondence with Morgan has been removed, Morgan later said in an online column that he tagged Markle after she tweeted about seeing a “friend” in the UK.
“Great to finally meet you too @meghanmarkle,” Morgan wrote on Twitter.
When someone replied to Morgan and called him him a “lucky guy,” the TV host replied: “I think Meghan knows she was the lucky one…”
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) June 30, 2016
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 1, 2016
“Hi @meghanmarkle, I have a vital question to ask you on behalf of all British subjects: when’s the next series of [‘Suits’] airing here?” the TV host wrote.
He included the crown emoji at the end of his tweet.
The statement continued: “Some of this has been very public – the smear on the front page of a national newspaper; the racial undertones of comment pieces; and the outright sexism and racism of social media trolls and web article comments.”
It also referenced how her friends, coworkers, and loved ones had been bombarded by members of the press.
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 13, 2016
“Meghan and I chatted for 90 minutes,” Morgan wrote. “Long enough for me to get a good insight into the new Royal girlfriend.”
He detailed how she had messaged him on Twitter to say she’d be in town, and would like to say hi. The two met at a local pub and talked for awhile until she had to leave for a dinner party.
“Next night, she was spotted in Soho House with Prince Harry,” Morgan wrote at the time. “I’m not surprised he’s fallen for her, or that he’s so ferociously protecting their relationship.”
He continued: “Meghan’s got beauty, brains, charm and a great sense of humour. She’s also an ambitious, hard-working and talented actress with an impressive passion for things she believes in.”
Morgan addressed Prince Harry in the column, telling him to “ignore all the poisonous rubbish you’re reading or hearing about her.”
“Meghan Markle is perfect princess material,” he concluded. “Just put any proposal in writing.”
“Is it wrong that my sole interest in Pippa Middleton’s wedding is what @meghanmarkle wears?” he wrote.
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) May 20, 2017
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 27, 2017
Morgan, who has been married since 2010, called the evening a “strictly platonic […] date in the Scarsdale.”
The broadcaster said he didn’t hear from Markle again, “which is perfectly understandable under the circumstances (though I desperately miss her sending me those early ‘Suits’ episode links!).”
“I’m guessing the words ‘Hey darling, fancy going to the pub with my ex tabloid newspaper editor mate Piers?’ were never going to go down very well with His Royal Highness, even if we are neighbours and I was once quite pally with his mum Diana,” Morgan wrote.
He wrote “all will be forgiven though” if he were to get an invite to the wedding, or “better still,” an invite to Harry’s stag night or bachelor party.
Morgan also told the story of their meeting on “Good Morning Britain,” and called Markle a “very smart, and very warm, nice, funny person.
Morgan brought up their in-person meeting once again, and also warned the new Duchess of Sussex against “poking the bear” when it comes to bringing feminism and politics into the royal family.
“You can’t preach about everyone getting a fair shake when you yourself are getting the most prestigious, privileged and unequal shake imaginable, simply for getting married, to a man,” he wrote.
“There is no better feminist role model for you than the Queen who has spent a lifetime keeping her opinions to herself yet is the most respected woman alive,” the column continued.
“We got on brilliantly and then I put her in a cab,” Morgan said. “And it turned out to be a cab that took her to a party where she met Prince Harry. And then the next night they had a solo dinner together, and that was the last I ever heard from Meghan Markle.”
“She ghosted me, Ryan!” when the host Ryan Tubridy asked what happened. “Meghan Markle ghosted me.”
“I really liked her — this is why it hurts,” Morgan said while laughing. “She’s just a slight social climber, I’m afraid.”
Morgan was one of the reporters who landed an exclusive interview with Thomas Markle, giving him platform to speak on “Good Morning Britain.” Morgan was particularly critical of the fact that Thomas had not attended the wedding (a circumstance for which the TV host blamed Meghan Markle).
The previous columns he wrote about their meeting had made no mention of these requests for advice or TV-show appearances.
He also shared the text of a conversation he had between her “Suits” costar Rick Hoffman after Hoffman attended the royal wedding.
“Piers! I am very sorry for not responding,” Morgan claims Hoffman said in a message. “You must understand, once I heard the news, out of respect for Meghan, I couldn’t share a thing. Now I can share fun stuff! I would love to catch up at that favorite pub of yours. Hope to hear from you pal. Love you pal. Rick.”
Morgan says he didn’t reply to Hoffman because he didn’t understand and found the behavior “rude.”
“I’d been ‘played’ by a couple of B-list actors, who were clearly just using me to advance their careers,” Morgan wrote in his column.
“And frankly, who am I, a former tabloid newspaper editor, to take a dim view of such ruthless antics?” he continued. “But on another level, the whole experience left me feeling suspicious and cynical about Ms Markle.”
“It was like, ‘These are the thoughts that I’m having in the middle of the night that are very clear … And I’m scared, because this is very real,” Markle told Winfrey. “This isn’t some abstract idea. This is methodical, and this is not who I am.’ But we had to go to this event, and I remember him saying, ‘I don’t think you can go.’ And I said, ‘I can’t be left alone.'”
In their 2021 interview with Winfrey, both Prince Harry and Markle described the intense pressure and mental-health strain that was caused by the UK’s negative press coverage of their lives and the lack of support they felt from within the palace institution.
“From my personal experience, she is someone I thought I was pretty matey with and ‘bang’, she met somebody more important and that was it, and told other members of her show who I was friendly with to stop talking to me,” Morgan claimed.
“The moment she met Harry she cut everybody off who she thought might be no longer desirable in her friend and family circle,” he continued.
For the rest of 2019, Morgan’s criticisms of Markle and accusations that she was playing the victim or using her acting skills to garner sympathy were regular occurrences on “Good Morning Britain.”
The move, which was dubbed “Megxit” by the British tabloids, prompted speculation about the couple’s future and how it would relate to the British monarchy.
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 13, 2020
“Oh pipe down, you virtue-signalling berk,” he replied to a critic who called his column shameful. “Your disingenuous race-baiting claims are what’s shameful. It’s got nothing to with with racism & everything to do with Meghan Markle being a ruthless, social climbing, fame-obsessed piece of work who’s now forced Harry from his country.”
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) February 13, 2020
“Meghan up to her old tricks again – getting rid of people no longer of any use to her,” he wrote. “I’ve met some ruthless operators in my time but she’s something else…”
These types of accusations continued throughout 2020.
While Morgan perceived her lack of contact as “ghosting,” it’s entirely possible the intial cut-off was due to her instructions not to engage with the media.
Morgan, who had been a “Good Morning Britain” cohost since 2015, is also a regular Daily Mail columnist and former news editor.
Markle told Winfrey she was “given a very clear directive from the moment the world knew Harry and I were dating to always say, ‘No comment.'”
The former actress also said her family members and friends were told to do the same.
Throughout that morning’s edition of “Good Morning Britain,” Morgan dismissed several claims Markle made, including that she had felt suicidal.
“I wouldn’t believe Meghan Markle if she gave me a weather report,” he wrote on Twitter. “Is it too late for Oscar nominations?”
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) March 8, 2021
—Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) March 8, 2021
While commenting on a clip of the Winfrey interview in which Markle said she had approached senior members of the royal institution for help but was denied, Morgan said: “Who did you go to? What did they say to you? I’m sorry, I don’t believe a word she said, Meghan Markle.”
“I understand that you don’t like Meghan Markle — you’ve made that so clear a number of times on this program,” Beresford said. “I understand that you’ve got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle or had one and she cut you off. She’s entitled to cut you off if she wants to. Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don’t think she has, but yet you continue to trash her.”
Morgan walked off the set of the morning show, saying: “I’m done with this. Sorry. You can trash me, mate, but not on my own show.”
“Following discussions with ITV, Piers Morgan has decided now is the time to leave ‘Good Morning Britain,'” ITV said in a statement. “ITV has accepted this decision and has nothing further to add.”
Reports also came in saying Markle herself had filed a complaint with ITV’s chief executive.
“I’m told that the letter was written by the duchess for one reason only,” royals reporter Omid Scobie said. “To raise and share concern over the serious impact that Morgan’s comments could have on anyone struggling with their mental health or thinking about seeking help.”