Meghan Markle Once Revealed She Was Completely Broke as an Actress: ‘I Had $20 in My Bank Account’

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex are two of the most famous people in the world. And Meghan, a former actress, certainly achieved a certain level of success on her own before marrying into the family. But the duchess once revealed money was so tight at one point that she could hardly afford a cheesecake.

Meghan Markle
Meghan Markle | Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Meghan Markle starred on ‘Suits’ before marrying Prince Harry

Meghan is still relatively new to the royal spotlight. The duchess was once a successful actress who starred on USA Network’s Suits prior to marrying into the royal family. She played paralegal Rachel Zane in the role, and while it paid well, she took far lower-paying acting gigs to get where she wanted to be.

Prior to starring on Suits, Meghan made appearances on shows such as CSI: Miami, Castle, and appeared in the movie Horrible Bosses. The duchess, who was worth $5 million prior to marrying Prince Harry, once had hardly any money to her name.

Meghan Markle at the Season 5 premiere of "Suits"
Meghan Markle at the Season 5 premiere of “Suits” | Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

RELATED: The Royal Family’s Social Media Posts Subtly Tell the Timeline of Tension With Harry and Meghan

The duchess said she once had only $20 in her bank account

Meghan was raised in Los Angeles, California, by a mother who was a social worker and a father who was a Hollywood Lighting Director. Though Meghan’s parents gave her a fortunate life, such as a sending her to an elite California private school, once she was out on her own, she struggled to find a reliable income source. Meghan graduated from Northwestern University and broke into acting, but the pay did not come easily.  

“I had $20 in my bank account,” Meghan revealed in a 2015 interview, according to The Sun. The duchess then revealed that a male director once told her that in order to get the part, she had to use that money to buy him a cheesecake. “… The director said, ‘You know I think you’re really something, but if you want to get the part you should bring me some cheesecake,’” Meghan recalled. “And I was like, ‘I’m sorry?’ So I spent my last money on this cheesecake, and I didn’t get the part.

Meghan also revealed that someone told her to lie about her age for acting jobs

Spending her last dime to impress a director wasn’t the negative experience Meghan had in the acting industry. She also revealed in 2015 that once she turned 30, she was often told to lie about her age to get more parts.

“I’m always told, ‘Don’t say your age’. I’m 33 and I’m really comfortable with that,” she said. “I think that as women actors, the industry can assume they have a shelf life.”

RELATED: Meghan Markle Is Still the Most Charismatic Member of the Royal Family

Meghan and Harry are now worth about $30 million

These days, Meghan has turned that $20 into nearly $30 million. The duchess married Prince Harry back in 2018, but she had already established herself as a successful actress long before that. Her $5 million net worth combined with the prince’s $25 million has the two sitting on about $30 million.

There have been rumors that Meghan might return to acting, and she already lent her voice to the Disney+ documentary “Elephant” back in 2019.