The Sussexes have a completely normal rider for their speeches & appearances?

Nominee, Beyonce Knowles-Carter, and Jay-Z at the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, CA on Sunday, January 5, 2020.

Has the British media punched itself out about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex? I always wonder that after a flurry of nastiness directed towards Harry & Meghan. Like, everybody has to knee-jerk and go to the absolute worst place, and then maybe things will settle down? But I doubt it. I think the British media is going to be salty AF for years, if not decades. Katie Nicholl at Vanity Fair chimed in on H&M paying back the “costly refurbishment” of Frogmore Cottage, but she really didn’t have any new information beyond the fact that Frogmore is “now standing empty, with dust sheets over the expensive art works and furniture.” LOL. Well, H&M paid for it so now they can use it whenever they want. Sources tell Nicholl that H&M are “very relieved and very pleased” to pay off the debt so quickly and “They’re now in their forever home, it’s the start of their new life and they’re very much looking forward to everything that’s about to come.”

Meanwhile, did you know the Netflix deal isn’t their only revenue stream? People are harping on and on about the paid speeches too, because of course. Just note: since they signed on a speaker’s agency, they have yet to make a paid speech. But someone (the Telegraph) got a hold of their rider and of course mountains are being made of molehills.

Britain’s Duke and Duchess of Sussex have issued a long list of demands involving their speaking appearances — including an upfront guarantee of the exact amount of money they will be paid and the ability to choose who introduces them and moderates the event, a report said Tuesday. Prince Harry and wife Meghan Markle — who last week inked a multimillion-dollar production deal with Netflix — recently signed on with the New York-based powerhouse Harry Walker Agency to rep them for speaking engagements.

According to a four-page “Virtual Event Request Form” devised by HWA for the royal duo, the pair will have the say-so on every detail of their online appearances, said London’s Telegraph, which obtained a copy of the conditions. For example, “The choice of Introducer and Moderator will be at the final discretion of the Speaker,” the form states.

In addition, “The Fee will need to be paid directly from the contracting organization’s account.”

The couple is believed to be able to command up to $1 million per speech. Before they agree to anything, the couple wants an estimate on the number of any attendees and a description of “who they are.’’ Also utmost on their mind are the sponsors. Harry and Meghan insist on knowing everyone helping to fund the event — “corporations, individuals, members of the organization and government entities or organizations’’ —and “what they are receiving in return for their sponsorship.’’

The pair said they want to be told whether “any live or pre-recorded program elements will run concurrently with the Speaker’s presentation” and who else might be speaking.

“What will the audience see on screen? Will you incorporate any branding? What will the Speaker see on screen immediately prior to and during their presentation?” the form asks.

The prince and Meghan even want to know what “connection format” the event will be broadcast through, to spare them the embarrassment of an unexpected technological glitch.

[From Page Six]

Yeah, all of this is pretty basic stuff which appears in any kind of contract of this sort. Of course they want to know about the sponsors and whether sponsor names will appear behind them or around them, because no one wants to see Prince Harry in front of a Summer’s Eve backdrop. They don’t want to be introduced by some kind of problematic a–hole and they want to control the content around them. Again, this is all pretty basic sh-t. Also, people seem to think that, like, Meghan is getting paid for doing virtual appearances and encouraging people to vote? She’s not.

meghan girlup4

Photos courtesy of social media, YouTube.

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71 Responses to “The Sussexes have a completely normal rider for their speeches & appearances?”

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  1. Teresa says:

    I will simply say the concept of paying that much for anyone to talk just strikes me as ridiculous. My company had Peyton Manning speak (we are a tech company) and I just can’t imagine what they paid to hear a bunch of football teamwork is the same as developers teamwork crap.
    No hate for Harry and Meghan hustling, and they are by far the most driven and least problematic of the royals, but I just can’t see what they could say that I’d think “worth it” would be (again from anyone really).
    As for their stipulation s, those make complete and total sense. They don’t want to accidentally be hanging with the next Prince Andrew because unlike him, they’d actually be ridiculed for sex trafficking.

    • Killfanora says:

      And the Royal Family don’t have riders like that if they speak at events that require more than “I declare this…..(whatever thing) open” ??

    • Myra says:

      It’s the world we live in now. I am still wrapping my head around how Kylie Jenner is a billionaire, with no talents to speak of and a brand of makeup you can get from anywhere else. Anyways, I’d much rather listen to Meghan speak, at least she is a great speaker.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        The Kylie Jenner brand of overpriced makeup is VERY popular with the 12-26 year old crowd. I have “friends” this age and was totally surprised. Estee Lauder and Lancome are considered “Old Lady” make-up.

        I do not get it either.

      • Alissa says:

        Shrug. I have a bunch of her lipsticks because I’ve tried a ton of matte liquid lipsticks and hers are the only ones that seem to last a long time, have a wide variety of colors, and not dry my lips out. The only other ones I’ve heard people say are comparable are Jeffree Starr’s and Kat Von D’s, and while Kylie isn’t a great person, she’s definitely better than either of those two. I’ve tried one eyeshadow palette and am not a huge fan, though, and I don’t use anything other than her lipsticks.

        Also @BayTampaBay, the only people I’ve ever known who use Estee Lauder are my grandma and my mom, so yeah, I would agree that it’s considered Old Lady makeup.

      • Myra says:

        *sigh* I too have friends who buy their products. Maybe not Kylie, but definitely one of the other Kardashians. They are bright professional young women, too. I feel very snobbish at times for refusing to buy celebrity products. Maybe I could make an exception for Fenty as I hear it accommodates various skin tones. Haven’t gone there, yet.

      • Alexandra says:

        It’s not that the products are bad. I too have heard that Kylie’s lip kits especially are well made. It’s the obscene amount Coty paid for it. Most business people realize all of these celebrity deals are way overpriced. Sure they make money but not when you overpay for the company in the first place.

        Yes fees for celebrity speakers too are way overpriced. I don’t blame the Sussexes for taking advantage of it though. I will be disappointed if they gossip sell their story though. I realize a lot of people want the t, but I just think they are better than that. Still I haven’t seen them do that, and until they do I’m not saying anything. Anyone who thinks the FF book is them spilling t hasn’t read the book. I’m not a fan. Yes the authors fangirl the Sussexes, but the stories don’t really make them out to seem all that great.

      • Q says:

        Kylie is not a billionaire.

    • Case says:

      It’s not really what they’ll say that is worth so much money, it’s the crowd they’ll draw.

      • Alexandra says:

        Sort of except a lot of these speaking engagements are closed and available to certain people only.

    • Cookie says:

      Agreed. I don’t see anything controversial about the riders either, but good lord that fee. There frankly isn’t enough anyone could say in an hour to justify that amount, save perhaps a president or world-renowned expert at the top of their field. I would frankly be disappointed if my company shelled out that kind of money to bring them in, because that’s a million dollars that could have been spent in so many other, better ways.

      • MsIam says:

        The article says up to $1million, and even that is just a guess. So if it’s a billion dollar company then they will feel the larger fee is warranted and affordable. Plus the speakers agency is getting a cut too, plus any other agents and managers.

  2. Becks1 says:

    It all sounds completely normal to me, not that I have experience with these kinds of contracts, lol, but these “demands” all seem pretty reasonable. Of course they want to know the specifics of the event, including sponsors, and of course they want control over how they are introduced etc. I imagine its probably standard language that HWA uses for its bigger clients.

    • Blairski says:

      I think it would be a big problem if they did NOT have these restrictions in place – they are all aimed at ensuring that the image and words of the Duke and Duchess can’t get mis-used or associated with people, ideas or companies that they do not want to be affiliated with. I can imagine that vetting any speech, no matter how minor, must take many hours of effort.

      • Abena Asantewaa says:

        They cannot afford not to be careful, or diligent, knowing how the British Media is ready to nitpick everything they do or say, and tuen it into a scandal. They are doing the right thing, just being cautious

      • MsIam says:

        Plus wasn’t part of their exit agreement that they wouldn’t do anything to embarrass the queen or go against her values? How can they do that unless they vet who they are speaking for as well as everyone involved? Unlike Andrew who I guess was running after ever dime he could get hands on. So leave it to the media to once again bash the Sussexes for merely holding up their end of the bargain.

  3. janey says:

    I know it would look terrible and cause a furore but I wish they could just remove everything they bought for Frogmore, just totally gut it and leave it empty except for the dust sheets.

    • vertes says:

      I wish they’d make Frogmore an AirBnb to get some of their money back. Since H&M paid for the reno, no one else should be allowed to stay there unless invited by or rented from H & M. I read a rumour that Beatrice & Edo might be “given” Frogmore.

  4. OriginalLala says:

    When I was younger I was in a band that toured often and even we had a rider – it’s not just for celebs or divas or whatnot.

    • LeaTheFrench says:

      Apart from the fee, as a former political aide I can confirm these are completely standard conditions. Most senior officials and political appointees will also want to approve the sitting arrangement if it’s a panel, request particular equipment (e.g. portable mike vs headset), ask for the pulpit to be set at a specific height, and will even have requests about the beverages (e.g. water brand) that will be available to them as they speak. There’s really nothing out of the ordinary here

    • vertes says:

      All performers have riders – some are pages long, specifying # of cases of specific brands of alcoholic bevs, sodas, bottled water to be supplied in the dressing rooms. J Lo has to have her rooms always freshly painted, then aired out, and filled with her favorite scented candles. Specific floral arrangements, foods, furnishings, even brands of toilet paper. Some groups want certain brands of cigars
      or other tobacco products. The fussiest “stars” can have riders up to 30 pages long.

    • Denise says:

      As the former Events Coordinator for my church, I can confirm that any artist we paid had a rider, including the nearby church school choir. Theirs seems very reasonable considering who they are and all of the ways an engagement can go south if they don’t have these stipulations in place.

  5. Lucy2 says:

    They want to know what they will be paid for work? And what work they will be doing? Dear God, the insanity, it’s almost like a… Contract? LOL.
    They are criticized mercilessly by the tabloids, so they are cautious about what they do, so now they are being criticized for being cautious. They are never, ever going to be able to win with them.

    • L84Tea says:

      Yeah, as soon as I read their requests, I understood. It sounds very “controlling”, but with them, they have to be due to what the media does to them on a daily basis.

      • Market Street Minifig says:

        No it does not sound controlling…it sounds like they want to avoid embarrassing Harry’s family while earning a living.

  6. HeatherC says:

    Now that you’ve put it in writing, I absolutely want to see Prince Harry with a Summer’s Eve backdrop. It’s Wednesday in 2020, I need the chuckle.

  7. Sofia says:

    These two get criticised for everything so I’m not surprised if they wanted to be aware of every little detail so they can see and possibly lessen the criticism they could face. But it probably is a “standard” contract for “big speakers”. The more “well known” you are, the more stipulations you can (and well, need)

  8. Maliksmama says:

    I’m interested in how the media go hold of any part of a contract these folks signed. Someone needs to be fired amd arrested. I believe the Sussex folk went with this agency because of its client roster and it’s reputation.
    If there’s a data breach like this, I wonder if the Sussex folk will want to stay with this agency.

    • Alexandra says:

      Honestly, it looks like a standard rider and my guess is it wouldn’t be that hard to get. I doubt there was a breach. Plus in fairness this is one story which hasn’t got a lot of traction cause it really isn’t saying anything.

  9. whitecat says:

    The choice of moderator seems a bit… odd. (I work in communications and policy, and i did conferences for the UN, think tanks, etc). Now it is standard practice to ask who the moderator and panelists are, and therefore you can “decline” based on that. But to chose their own moderator is a bit of a… odd one. I understand the need to control who introduces them and who doesn’t, but usually their comm person is suppose to sort that out with the invited party, and usually it’s an agreement between the two parties.

    Every thing else is pretty standard though.

    • MsIam says:

      What if it’s some Faux News a-hole as a moderator? A lot of people in news moonlight with these types of gigs. Harry and Meghan know the media is gunning for them. Look at the stink the tabloids made about that Russian guy who owned the home they purchased, even though there is nothing to suggest they even knew him. So the media created this mess and now want to try and throw rocks at them.

      • NVYwife says:

        Then they don’t take the engagement?

      • whitecat says:

        Exactly as NVYwife says. They decline the invitation. I’ve set up conferences where heads of states, high profile diplomats, etc and all they never requested “control” over the moderator. They do ask who is on the panel, and who is the moderator, and if the moderator is someone from Fox News or their bio contradicts their values, they would decline (and it’s more sensitive for heads of states than for Meghan and Harry, as heads of states are accountable to their governments, citizens, etc).
        But when they decline and give the moderators as the reason, that’s when you enter into negotiations, and reach an agreement (if they still want to participate).

      • MsIam says:

        @whitecat the wording says choice of the moderator will be at the final discretion of the Sussexes. It doesn’t say that they would bring their own moderator just that they want to know who is introducing them and what they stand for. Meaning exactly what you said, it would be negotiated or they would pull out. But I would think that if an organization wanted the Sussexes as speakers changing moderators would not be a deal breaker. People are paying to see the speaker and not the moderator.

      • Whitecat says:

        Yes true, however I do think this is only private events and not conference level because speakers do not have that much control. Let’s have a hypothetical scenario where we have a high level panel with UN chief of UNDP, FM of Canada, a former prime minister of Australia. If all three decide they want to have the final say on the moderator, nothing will ever get done and it’s an organizational nightmare. It seems to me these are private events, which is a shame because I did want to see Sussex more public and out and about.

      • Sid says:

        @NVYWife, I would assume that Meghan and Harry would turn down any speaking offer where they know going in that the introducer or moderator is someone who would be problematic for them. I take “The choice of Introducer and Moderator will be at the final discretion of the Speaker” to be a protective clause in case something bad is revealed about the person in either of those roles after Meghan and Harry are already signed on. This seems fairly straightforward for anyone with a high public profile.

    • BabsORIG says:

      Hogwash, EVERY “big fish” in the this industry has “control” over ALL these things, not sure why you making such a big deal over this. None of the people that are worth this kind of money per speech would just go out there and e associated with anyone without having them vetted, nobody. You saying one thing outta one side of your mouth and then saying something else outta the other side. Everyone, including the Sussexes, just want to have the option of opting out if they don’t like the moderator or whoever else if associated with the event if they feel there is association poses a potential to damage to their (speaker’s) brand, nothing unusual or nefarious about it. You seem to focus on “control” and harp on it none stop because it’s the Sussexes, big eyeball. This seems like a standard contract, nothing unusual, about it except if of course you in the habit of making mountains outta mole hills.

      • Whitecat says:

        I actually like the Sussex but no need to attack me. Lord have mercy, it seems like nobody is allowed to even critique them. Jeez

      • ADS says:

        @Whitecat, it’s a weird critique when ultimately you are saying they could achieve the same ends by going through some convoluted route rather than being straight forward about it like they have. Plus you’ve posted four times on this point and are making a big deal out of it. To then act like people are jumping down your throat for no reason seems a bit disingenuous.

  10. Nanny to the Rescue says:

    I think all the demands are reasonable.

    There is one possible downside to this much control (although worth the risk): If at any moment any of the speakers, sponsors etc. proves to be problematic, it will be on them, too. People who don’t have control over who they are at the event with can always claim they didn’t know. This excuse will be closed for the Sussexes. They’ll have to be extra careful now.

    • BnLurkN4eva says:

      Except no one really gets away with saying they didn’t know, do they? I think this is the best approach, if the person’s hidden skeleton comes out afterwards then everyone will be shocked and can’t blame them as it was a secret no one knew about.

  11. Chlo says:

    I review speaking and sponsorship contracts for my company, and I make sure we have the same control over the same points, whether the engagements are worth $5000 to $100,000. I mean, c’mon.

  12. TheOriginalMia says:

    Sounds reasonable to me. They want to know who’s financing their speeches, so there aren’t any issues with some shady person or institution being associated with them. That’s called protecting your brand. The BM will find anything about them to complain about. Gah. Give it a rest.

  13. tee says:

    Was recently thinking about how the British media on the royal beat only partake in actual journalism when it comes to Harry and Meghan. All the other royals get the benefit of only having the things they brief being shared, but even when they had access, RRs would only really go digging when it came to the Sussexes. They havent seemed curious at all about anyone else in the family lately.

    • BnLurkN4eva says:

      This is so true. They go digging and when they find nothing they make stuff up and forget to print the actual stories they were supposed to be covering – memories.

  14. Marjorie says:

    Their “forever” home? Are they rescue puppies?

    • Alexandra says:

      I know my daughter said to her grandparents your death house. You know the house you have til you die. Here I was calling it dream home. It is an odd term.

      • Mindy_Dopple says:

        Your DEATH house. It makes sense but cracks me up. What we’re going to start calling our “dream” home will now be changed to our death house.

    • fluffy_bunny says:

      Meghan rescued Harry so he’s kind of a rescue prince. But I doubt the first home they buy is their forever home.

  15. Lisa says:

    Heads should be rolling as to how their contract was revealed. Also it seems very standard but of course a mountain will be made out of it.

    • Nyro says:

      It’s not their contract. It’s likely standard info given to anyone making inquiries about their agency, including up to no good British gossip mongers.

  16. Sarah says:

    I don’t see anything unreasonable here. Every summer we have a series of British Summer Time concerts in Hyde Park every year and each one day event is basically a mini festival that has been sponsored by Barclays Bank for the last few years at least. Last year Neil Young co-headlined a date (with Bob Dylan – massive disappointment, Neil was amazing) and he insisted that Barclays be off as a sponsor because of their links to fossil fuels. That’s exactly what happened, not one bit of signage left with their name/brand across the whole site. As the person people are there to see I totally get wanting to manage the associations around you.

    • one of the Marys says:

      Bob Dylan has the reputation of being terrible live but I guess due to his stature people do not call him out. He played many years ago in Newfoundland and was publicly called out, Newfoundlanders do not put up with delusions of grandeur, but being a small backwater I suppose that opinion was ignored

  17. Freddy says:

    There is nothing shocking or demanding about their rider….unlike some that I have seen.

  18. Elizabeth K. Mahon says:

    I mean their rider is totally reasonable compared to some movie stars and rock bands I can think of. It’s not like they are exacting for only green M&M’s in the greenroom or having their dressing room painted white.

  19. Nyro says:

    This was written by by that awful Camilla Tominey lady. I’m sure she went on their website and requested information, posing as a PR person of some sort so she could get her hands on a standard rider and them present it like HM are out there making diva demands. So pathetic. They’ve got nothin’!! Harry was so right to pay off that 2.4 million all at once. The rota rats are all in shock right now. Meanwhile, Omid Scoble is filming something with Netflix. See what happens when you get on the winning team? LOL , imagine betting against the most beloved Prince and his dynamic biracial American wife in favor of the dusty royal family. 😂😂

  20. Merricat says:

    I am surprised that this is considered a news item. I wonder how much money was exchanged for this non-story? I wonder how long a publication is willing to pay for non-stories? Hmmm.

    • Desert Lizard says:

      Sadly, I’m not surprised. It seems to be a pretty standard rider but most people may not know that. It was designed to make Meghan and Harry look petty and controlling. Since the gutter media is without them now, everything they can get their hands on, no matter how small, will be blown up and distorted to make the Sussexes look selfish and greedy. The sewer rags miss the clicks they used to get at Meghan’s expense. This is a pathetic effort at regaining that.

  21. Lunasf17 says:

    I guess good for them for cashing in (they need to pay for that new mortgage somehow). No shade to them for that but I would rather an organization donate a million dollars to a food bank than hire them if I have a say. They seem like good people but there are much more interesting people IMO I would rather hear from. Harry is famous because we was born into royalty and extreme privilege and Megan is a successful actress but I have zero need to hear them speak at an event.

    • MsIam says:

      No one is forcing anyone to do anything. And there are conferences held everyday all over the world that hire speakers. It’s a lucrative industry that employs lots of people. But I guess you think you sound noble by saying they should all be out of work and the money given to food banks? Or is it just money that would be made by the Sussexes?

    • Nyro says:

      Good for you. But they’re going to be giving speeches mostly to elite and exclusive crowds, so I don’t get how you think that includes you.

    • Intheknow says:

      @lunasf17, oh please, you needed to find something to complain about. Go listen to whom ever you want to hear make a speech. This is the beauty of have a choice. You are complaining as if anyone is forcing you to listen to them.

    • windyriver says:

      Possibly this is one of the ways they plan to finance Archewell?

  22. Intheknow says:

    Everyone of the Windsors is jealous of this mega deal. Everyone of them. Mostly, I am picturing Andrew saying “Mummy, will you make Harry and that awful Meg give me half of that?” And Fergie sitting down with her 4th glass of wine wondering how she can get them to ‘invest’ in one of her schemes. If I were funny and or creative, I’d do a little sketch of each of their reactions. LOL.

    While I think Charles wanted Harry and Meghan in the fold, I want to believe he’s secretly proud of them and relieved Harry will not have to rely in William for anything.

    The Middleton must be wondering if they made a mistake and how they can suck up to get some of the Netflix know, media contacts that could make them actual money!

  23. paranormalgirl says:

    My husband is an attorney specializing in entertainment contracts. He just said that is a completely standard rider. They aren’t asking for anything that is above and beyond what they should be expecting to receive.

  24. upstatediva says:

    Katie Nicholls is not a trusted source (of the Sussexes). She spent many years dining off the fact that she once had drinks with Harry and his friends. I think KP is still playing leakideaks with her though. The Sovereign Grant paid for the basic structural renovations of Frogmore Cottage: plumbing, electrical, structure from the walls in. That’s what they repaid (ridiculousness for a house they will never own, in my opinion) The Sussexes already had paid for furnishings and any upgrades to the basic construction project. So that “expensive artworks and furnishings” ALREADY were paid for in 2019 and have always belonged to them. If they want to leave dust cloths over them forever, it is nobody’s business.

    • anon says:

      Hear, hear, upstatediva:

      Why should these two have to pay back the renovations on a property that doesn’t belong to them? I’m sure Harry wasn’t about to let this so-called “debt” go, but still.

      I did appreciate that he very specifically included language in the press announcement that he fully intends to keep Frogmore as his and Meghan’s “residence in the U.K.”

      Translation? “I paid for it, bitches. I’m not letting go of it.”

  25. Mariane says:

    This is STANDARD practice for Alist and ex politicians. The haters and gutter press is bitter about not getting to catch them in a predicament. They were hoping they’d be as careless & dodgy as Andrew who’s known to take money for access

  26. anon says:


    You get Blogger of the Year award for the Best Use of Summer’s Eve and Prince Harry in the same sentence, lol!

    Tooooo funny.