Who Played the Fake Prince Harry on ‘I Wanna Marry Harry’ and What Is He Up to Now?

A few years before Prince Harry began dating Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, there was a reality show called I Wanna Marry Harry, where women vie for Harry’s heart. However, as audience members quickly came to realize, “Prince Harry” on the show was simply a look-alike.

But who played this fake “Harry” and what has he been doing after the show ended?

Matthew Hicks in a still from 'I Wanna Marry Harry'
Matthew Hicks on ‘I Wanna Marry Harry’ | Chris Raphael/FOX

Who played Prince Harry on ‘I Wanna Marry Harry’?

The man who played “Harry” is an average Englishman named Matthew Hicks. Instead of being royalty, Hicks was a 23-year-old environmental consultant.

However, Hicks has noted that he tried to not straight-up lie to the contestants on the show. As Refinery29 wrote, “He was instructed not to act like the famous royal but instead to be himself while taking some creative liberties when it came to facts about his background and upbringing. He made it clear he never wanted to flat-out tell the women he was Prince Harry. He didn’t want to lie.”

Meanwhile, the production team tried their best to give off the impression that Hicks might have been a VIP figure. For example, he constantly had security guards around, and they would sometimes interrupt a date he was having to whisk him off in an urgent manner.

Did Matthew Hicks marry the contestant who won ‘I Wanna Marry Harry’?

'I Wanna Marry Harry' still of Matthew Hicks standing in front of the contestants
Matthew Hicks standing in front of the contestants | Chris Raphael/FOX

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I Wanna Marry Harry had eight episodes total. The winner was a 24-year-old model and actor named Kimberly Birch. 

However, Birch and Hicks did not end up dating after the show ended. As Refinery29 noted, the two of them split the $300,000 prize between them and “went their separate ways.” The outlet said, “They only saw each other a few times after filming (once in a meetup orchestrated by producers to see if their romance could last beyond the show, and a few more times during press opportunities), but they never developed deeper feelings.”

Birch has since revealed some behind-the-scenes tidbits about the show, including all the different ways the production team tried to pass Hicks off as Harry.

What has Matthew Hicks been doing?

Matthew Hicks in a still from 'I Wanna Marry Harry'
Matthew Hicks in a still from ‘I Wanna Marry Harry’ | Chris Raphael/FOX

RELATED: Why Prince Harry Did Not Marry the ‘Most Suitable’ Person He Dated

I Wanna Marry Harry turned Hicks into a TV personality for a short while. Refinery29 reported that he was offered more opportunities to work in front of the camera, but he declined them, preferring to go back to his regular life.

“I was quite happy just going back to my old job and cracking on with my life,” he shared.

Hicks is no longer an environmental consultant, however. He works at a school and, at the time of the article’s publication in July 2020, was on his way to becoming a physics teacher. 

Hicks also has a girlfriend, though she has not seen his infamous reality show.