Actress Claire Foy, who portrayed Queen Elizabeth II on Netflix series The Crown, earned less than her co-star, Matt Smith, who played Prince Philip.
This revelation was made by executive producers, Suzanne Mackie and Andy Harries, at the INTV Conference in Jerusalem this Tuesday.
Foy was paid $40,000 per episode, Variety revealed last year. Smith’s salary, on the other hand, has not been made public. Despite Foy receiving acclaim for her charming performance in Season 1, Smith continued to receive a higher salary in Season 2.
The two claimed that the reason for the difference in pay was that Smith, 35, was a seasoned actor when he joined the series. He had starred on the popular BBC show, Doctor Who, from 2010-2014. Foy, 33, on the other hand, was relatively unknown, having only appeared in the BBC mini-series, Wolf Hall.
Mackie announced that “going forward, no one gets paid more than the queen” but Foy doesn’t stand to benefit from this. In Season 3 of The Crown, the lead character of The Queen will be played by Olivia Colman.
Smith was nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Award (SAG), Broadcasting Press and Guild Award and Online Film and Television Association Award for his performance as the Duke of Edinburgh, but did not win on any platform.
Foy won a Golden Globe and SAG award after the first season of the Crown, and also received nominations at the BAFTA and Primetime Emmy’s. She was also nominated for another SAG Award and a Golden Globe for the second season.
One fan aptly summed up common sentiment about the pay gap saying, “The goddamn Queen can’t even get equal pay.”
The gender pay gap is a growing issue in Hollywood, as of late, as more and more actresses have come forward with news that they were paid less than their male counterparts.
Fans have not responded well to the news of this gender pay gap and took to Twitter to unleash their thoughts.
It does indeed seem preposterous that the lead role on a T.V series be paid less than that of a supporting actor. #JusticeforClaire is now trending on Twitter.