Ryan Reynolds & Rob McElhenney Pulled Out All The Stops Before They Met King Charles

A good impression is important when you are meeting someone as powerful as King Charles III. Two popular celebs were given instructions on how to carry themselves when they were scheduled to meet him. American Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds, who holds Canadian and American citizenship, are actors and co-owners of Wales' Wrexham AFC, and they star in the "Welcome to Wrexham” documentary series about their journey with the soccer club. A teaser for the second season of the documentary series gave viewers a taste of Reynolds and McElhenney's royal training as they prepared for the important meeting.

The teaser begins with a ringing phone. Then, Reynolds says, "So, the king of England called." Classical music plays over a shot of the king entering Wrexham's stadium, and Reynolds adds, "We went to monarchy boot camp. It's like the military except your pinky is always up." 

Later in the teaser, Reynolds and McElhenney's etiquette coach Lisa Gaché says, "Everything begins with a first impression." She also teaches them the proper handshake technique — "the two pumps and release." Reynolds and McElhenney snicker after demonstrating the handshake. Despite the giggles, their etiquette coach says, "Lovely!" The teaser ends with a seemingly bewildered McElhenney saying, "That's the king ... of, of England." 

Rob McElhenney believed they could turn the king into a Wrexham fan if he wasn't one

Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds bought the club, located in North Wales, in 2020, for £2 million — much to the dismay of Reynolds' wife, Blake Lively. Lively was reportedly furious when her husband bought the soccer team, but her perspective has since changed — and how could it not, if people like the king are interested in Wrexham?

Prior to Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds' meetup with King Charles III and Queen Camilla, they spoke about their feelings on the royal visit. In an interview posted to the On Demand Entertainment YouTube channel, the co-owners called the visit "an incredible honor" and appeared thrilled that the king would be coming to the Racecourse Ground stadium (which has since been renamed the SToK Racecourse in honor of their sponsor,  SToK Cold Brew Coffee). Reynolds said, "We'll do anything to uplift and elevate this community and this club, and having the king pay a visit is certainly one way to do it, that's for sure. We're very excited."

McElhenney said that since the king called them for this visit, he hoped the royal was already a Wrexham fan. "If not, we'll make him a fan!" McElhenney said. Later in the interview, Reynolds mentioned the etiquette classes he and McElhenney attended. It seems that the classes paid off because, during the visit, everyone was all smiles.

The meeting was a success

"Welcome to Wrexham" Season 2 did not premiere until September 2023, but the meeting happened months earlier. In December 2022, people got to see footage of King Charles III and Queen Camilla's meeting with Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney. The ITV News segment on the event showed footage of the actors and the royals shaking hands (attempting the two pump and release method Reynolds and McElhenney learned in etiquette class, but Charles held on a little longer). Later in the video, viewers see McElhenney pointing out where they're renovating the stadium to the queen consort.

As Reynolds was leaving, a reporter asked how it was meeting the king and the "Free Guy" actor replied, "Really amazing!" McElhenney also spoke with reporters and when asked if they turned the royal couple into Wrexham fans, he said, "I think they were already Wrexham fans, it seemed. The questions that were asked, it was very clear that they had seen the show, that they knew of the story, that they were invested in the – in not only the club itself but the community."

The Royal Family Channel on YouTube, which covers royal news, shared a video of the meeting, showcasing King Charles and Queen Camilla meeting the co-owners, Wrexham's Executive Director Humphrey Ker, and some players on both the men's and women's Wrexham teams. You can also see Reynolds and McElhenney's etiquette classes and royal meeting in the Season 2 premiere of "Welcome to Wrexham," which airs on Hulu.