The Real Reason Meghan Markle Skipped the Gracie Awards Has Nothing to Do With the Paparazzi Car Chase

One week after Meghan Markle and Prince Harry were the victims of a two-hour, “relentless” and “near catastrophic,” car chase by paparazzi, Meghan was supposed to attend the Gracie Awards in Beverly Hills to accept an award for her podcast Archetypes. The Duchess of Sussex skipped the award ceremony—but not because of the car chase, Hello! reveals.

The outlet wrote, “Hello! understands that the Duchess had never planned to attend the event in person due to a personal commitment.”

Meghan and Harry have not appeared publicly since last Wednesday in New York City. The couple attended the Ms. Foundation’s Women of Vision Awards, where Meghan received an award. The car chase occurred after they left the ceremony.

A source spoke to Us Weekly in a report published yesterday about how Meghan and Harry are “shocked“ by the public skepticism regarding the car chase. “They insist their account of the car chase was absolutely not exaggerated, and for people to say otherwise is so hurtful and out of line,” the source said.

That source added that they have no intentions of hiding now. “As far as staying out of sight and being scared to show their faces, that’s not going to happen,” the source explained. “[This has] just strengthened their resolve to keep standing up for themselves and speaking out when they feel wronged.”

Harry and Meghan’s rep Ashley Hansen has been vocal in shutting down conspiracy theories. Hansen told the New York Times, regarding claims the couple staged the car chase, “Respectfully, considering the duke’s family history [Harry’s mother Princess Diana was killed in 1997 when paparazzi were pursuing her vehicle in Paris], one would have to think nothing of the couple or anybody associated with them to believe this was any sort of PR stunt. Quite frankly, I think that’s abhorrent.”

Their spokesperson’s comments stand in stark contrast to the royal family, whose spokespeople rarely comment on news stories as the royals follow a “never complain, never explain” policy.

Headshot of Alyssa Bailey

Senior News and Strategy Editor

Alyssa Bailey is the senior news and strategy editor at, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton). She previously held positions at InStyle and Cosmopolitan. When she’s not working, she loves running around Central Park, making people take #ootd pics of her, and exploring New York City.


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