Actress Parisa Fitz-Henley, who was cast in the role of Meghan Markle in the May 13, Lifetime Television movie “Prince Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance” has a connection to the Guyanese community.
Guyanese-born fashion designer, Roger Gary at the first Caribbean Fashion Week in 2001, outfitted the 41-year-old Jamaica-born, and former Miss Jamaica Fashion Model winner.
The world renowned, award-winning designer said he met Parisa at the event in Kingston, the first in the region for a fashion event of this magnitude that brought on a buzz of excitement, that everyone heading to Jamaica was feeling.
Gary, who has outfitted beauty queens, first ladies, and top models, including winner of America’s next Top Model, Eva Pigford, said he was a featured designer, and part of the production team.
“I also attended art school in Jamaica and it was my first time heading back since I left,” said the aqua couture designer, who was featured in Caribbean Life, ‘Woman’s Wear Daily,’ ‘New York Daily News,’ ‘World Bride,’ ‘Essence Magazine,’ ‘Unchain Magazine,’ ‘Gem Magazine,’ ‘British Pride,’ ‘Shabeau Magazine,’ ‘She Caribbean,’ and ‘The JC Report,’ among others.
The production team, he said, had casted many international models for the event, and “the idea was to mix them with the local and regional models,” said the couturier, who immediately saw Fitz, as one of the star models.
“The moment I saw Parisa I knew I had to outfit her in one of my signature designs,” said Gary, so he chose a Red Indian inspired piece with flowing chiffon veil that framed her head of curls and face beautifully.
“She rocked it,” he said, adding that the successful actress had an engaging personality backstage, and was a ‘big hit’ with other designers.
The Roger Gary Designs creator of elegant evening wear, day wear and swimwear for both private clientele as well as fashion-forward customers, and who is also a graduate of Parsons School of Design, and the Pratt Institute, is excited that one of his former models has snagged such a significant role, portraying a future princess, and stated that he worked with Parisa on other projects since then.
“I was very happy when I read about her role as the future princess. I think it was a perfect casting by the network to have her as the lead,” said the master couturier of elegant cocktail dresses, perfectly tailored blouses, and beautiful gowns.
“I corresponded with her recently via text messaging and extended congratulations on her starring role. I also offered her one of my creations for any red carpet appearance she may have,” said Gary who was the only designer to feature his collection twice on ‘BET’s “Spring Bling” and ‘BET’s “Rip The Runway,” alongside music moguls, Busta Rymes and LL Cool J.
Fritz-Henley who was born in Kingston and attended the St. Andrew High School, according to reports, played roles in the ABC’s highly popular series, “Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice.” She also starred in “Midnight Texas,” an NBC TV series.
It was reported that the beauty, born to a mother of Jamaican heritage, and Caucasian American father, is a spitting image of Markle.
Prince Harry of Whales, the fifth in line for the British throne, will walk down the aisle of St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle with Meghan Markle on Saturday, May 19.