The Duke and Duchess of Sussex made a surprise appearance at the film's Jamaica premiere last month and had a drink with the star afterward
Kingsley Ben-Adir recalls rubbing elbows with royalty at the Jan. 23 premiere of Bob Marley: One Love.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attended the event at the invitation of their friends, Brian Robbins, the president and CEO of Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon, and his wife Tracy James, and hung out with the film’s star following the premiere.
“We had a drink after, and we spent some time together,” Ben-Adir tells PEOPLE. “Nice people. Harry's funny, and Meghan was lovely. They were lovely, man."
"It was really nice to meet them and spend time with them," he continues. "We spoke about music, we spoke about Bob, we spoke about the film, we spoke about life.”
As PEOPLE previously reported, Meghan, 42, and Prince Harry, 39, are longtime fans of Marley’s music and his message. Bob Marley: One Love tells the life story of the Jamaican musician, who urged peace and unity through his songs.
He survived an assassination attempt in 1976 but ultimately died of cancer in 1981 at age 36.
To prepare for the role, Ben-Adir, who previously portrayed Barack Obama in 2020’s The Comey Rule and Malcolm X in One Night in Miami the same year, learned to play the guitar and sing. He also studied Marley’s accent and learned Jamaican Patois.
“I think I just had to get my head around what my feeling is when it comes to playing real-life characters, which is that it is about the essence of the person, not being an exact copy or trying to do a mimic,” Ben-Adir said in an interview with Paramount. “But for some reason when it came to Bob, my instinct was I wanted to be and look as close as I could do him.”
“I think it was just something to obsess with that I didn’t have that much control over,” he continued. “But if it was me looking in from outside, I would have been saying all the things everyone else was saying to me, like, ‘It doesn’t matter about this and this, it’s just about the essence, it’s just about the essence.’”
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After putting in so much hard work on the film, Ben-Adir tells PEOPLE it was nice to reunite with the Bob Marley: One Love crew at the Kingston premiere as well.
“It was great to be with the band. It was great to be with all of the cast and all of the people that I worked with. I haven't seen them in so long,” he says.
Bob Marley: One Love is in theaters nationwide on Feb. 14.
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