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Meghan Markle reportedly signs deal with Disney following royal split

This wouldn't be the first time the Duchess of Sussex has partnered with the California-based entertainment company.
Meghan Markle
Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, has reportedly signed a deal with Disney in exchange for a charitable donation.Samir Hussein / WireImage
/ Source: TODAY

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, has reportedly signed a deal with Disney to do a voice-over in exchange for a contribution to a wildlife charity of her choosing.

The news, which was reported by U.K. newspaper The Times, comes on the heels of the shocking announcement that the former Meghan Markle and her husband, Prince Harry, plan to "step back" as senior members of the British royal family.

The couple hope to become financially independent and carve out more progressive roles for themselves, spending more time in North America. In the meantime, they will continue to retain their residence at Frogmore Cottage — that is, with the queen's permission.

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The reported Disney deal has Meghan doing a voice-over in return for a donation to Elephants Without Borders, which supports wildlife conservation. The collaboration points to the couple's desire to use their celebrity status to further their favorite charities, though some critics see the move to partner with a media company as a blemish on the royal family's image.

Meghan has reportedly already completed the voice-over work prior to the couple's Christmas holiday in Canada where they spent time with Meghan's mother, Doria Ragland.

This wouldn't be the first time Harry and Meghan have partnered with Disney. In July, the couple attended the premiere of the Disney film "The Lion King." The premiere was held in support of African Parks, an organization Harry supports. And following the birth of their son, Archie, Disney presented the couple with a special cartoon featuring Winnie the Pooh to celebrate the happy occasion.

According to one report referenced in The Times, this new deal has confirmed speculation by senior members of the royal family that the couple have been signing deals with "firms including Disney" as they step away from tradition and into a life less bound by appearance and familial restrictions.

In recent months, the couple have been vocal about the intense pressure they receive from the media, particularly since becoming parents. The pair said they hope to raise Archie with an appreciation for the royal tradition he was born into while giving their family the space they need to focus on "the next chapter" which seems to include support for a variety of charities.

Now the emerging report about Meghan's work as a Disney voice-over artist has everyone watching to see how the young couple will carve out a new role for themselves as they step back from Buckingham Palace and onto a new uncharted path.