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Prince William and Kate Middleton Step Out at Movie Premiere

Credit: Mark Large/Getty Images Prince William and Kate Middleton are just days away from celebrating their first wedding anniversary, but the couple put their celebrations aside to take a spin on the red carpet.

The high-wattage royal couple stepped out today at the London premiere of the Disney Nature film "African Cats," a movie about lions and cheetahs that was directed by the couple's friend, and Madonna ex, Guy Ritchie.

The London skies were dark and drizzly for the premiere event, but Middleton, 30, still managed to shine in a gray dress hemmed with jeweled turquoise by British designer Matthew Williamson.  Her husband, 29-year-old Prince William, proved ever the gentleman by holding an umbrella above his bride while the couple made the short, but wet, walk from their chauffeured car to inside the BFI Southbank Theater, where the screening was held, according to the UK newspaper The Mirror.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, as they are formally known, were on hand to support the film because it benefits one of Prince William's charitable causes, the Tusk Trust charity.

William has been a royal patron of the Tusk Trust conservation charity since 2005 and delivered brief remarks after the event.

"I would just ask one thing of you," he said, according to a transcript of his prepared remarks released by the palace.  "Spread the word about the work of Tusk and other organizations engaged in this battle to preserve Africa's unique natural heritage. … There is nowhere more awe-inspiring or beautiful than the vast plains of Kenya's Maasai Mara. … We have to preserve places like this … not just for us, but for future generations."

William also spoke of his personal experiences in the area, describing a trip to Botswana he took with his younger brother, Prince Harry.  It was also in Africa, two years ago, while on vacation in Kenya, that William asked a then 28-year-old commoner Middleton to marry him.

The red carpet appearance market the first time the couple has appeared together at a public event since William returned from his nearly seven-week deployment to the Falkland Islands last month.  The couple will celebrate their one-year wedding anniversary this Sunday, April 29.

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