Claire Foy, who won a Golden Globe for her role as Queen Elizabeth II in the Netflix original series The Crown, was paid less than her male co-star.
The confession was made by executive series producers Suzanne Mackie and Andy Harries at the INTV Conference in Jerusalem, according to Variety. When asked if Matt Smith, who played Foy’s onscreen husband Prince Phillip, was paid a higher salary than the leading lady, they admitted he was.
According to the Guardian, the Stockport-native earned £29,000 per episode, though Smith’s salary has not been announced. The producers claimed that the reason Smith was paid more was because of his success in Doctor Who. The Crown has already broken records as one of the most expensive shows ever made; almost £100 million was spent on the production of season one alone.
Thankfully, producers of The Crown have seen the error of their ways. “Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen,” Mackie told the crowdat the INTV Conference. But it’s too little too late for Foy, who will not be reprising her royal role in season three. The 33-year-old actress was only signed up for the first two seasons, as she is too young to portray the Queen in her later years. Instead, Olivia Colman will be taking up the part.
The revelation comes in the midst of the #MeToo campaign, a movement for gender equality in the workplace brought about by leading women in Hollywood. Jessica Chastain, who starred in the recent film Molly’s Game, recently said, “There’s no reason why [an actress] should be doing a film with other actors and get paid less than her male co-stars. It’s completely unfair. It’s not right. It’s been happening for years and years and years. I think it’s brave to talk about it. I think everyone should talk about it.”