The Crown: Claire Foy says ‘embarrassing’ pay-gap opened my eyes
- Claire Foy played the role of young Queen Elizabeth in the Netflix drama
- Despite the show’s budget, she was paid less than her male co-star Matt Smith
- During a panel discussion Foy didn’t hold back about her feelings, calling the entire ordeal “embarrassing”
British actor Claire Foy played the titular role Of Queen Elizabeth in Netflix’s The Crown. She was lauded far and wide for her role as a young Queen in the true story-based series. The series became quite popular not only in the US but also in India.
However, despite her outstanding performance in the drama series, she was initially paid an embarrassing salary, less than her male co-star Matt Smith, who played the role of her husband Prince Philip.
This secret was revealed when Suzanne Mackie and Andy Harries the producers of The Crown were asked the question at the INTV conference in Jerusalem in 2018. Mackie said, “The producers acknowledged that [Smith] did make more due to his Doctor Who fame, but that they would rectify that for the future. Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen.”
Soon when Newsweek reported that Claire would pocket $275,000 in back pay which covered the 20 episodes that were affected, the wage gap was closed. The entire pay scandal came as an embarrassment for the show, given the fact that the series highlights a woman in power.
In a statement reported by Newsweek, The Crown’s production company, Left Bank Pictures, stated that they held sole responsibility for the salaries. They issued a statement that read: “As the producers of The Crown we are responsible for budgets and salaries. The actors are not aware of who gets what and cannot be held personally responsible for the pay of their colleagues.:
The further added, “We are absolutely united with the fight for fair pay, free of gender bias and for a rebalancing of the industry’s treatment of women in front of the camera and behind the scenes,” as reported by International the News.
During a panel discussion at CinemaCon 2018, Claire didn’t hold back about her feelings regarding the money scandal, calling the entire ordeal “embarrassing.” She further said, “I certainly won’t be naive about those things.”
“It’s really opened my eyes about what I am allowed to have an opinion about and what I’m allowed to stand up for myself about. And I think that’s really changed my approach to myself and other women in this industry. It’s been only a positive thing—even though, embarrassing.”