‘The Crown’ stirs royal pay disparity controversy
In the future, the Queen will reign in pay on “The Crown.” That is, of course, according to producers from the show, who admitted at the INTV conference in Jerusalem on Tuesday that star Claire Foy was paid less than co-star Matt Smith during the first two seasons of the award-winning Netflix drama.
“Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen,” executive producer Suzanne Mackie said, according to a report in Variety.
Foy played Queen Elizabeth II during her time on the show. Smith played Prince Philip.
Mackie attributed the discrepancy to his experience starring in the iconic British program “Doctor Who” prior to joining the cast of “The Crown.”
Before her role on “The Crown,” Foy appeared in several episodes of U.K. drama series “Upstairs Downstairs” and played Anne Boleyn in the Emmy-nominated “Wolf Hall” miniseries.
Representatives for Smith and Foy did not respond to CNN’s multiple requests for comment.
Left Bank Pictures, which produces “The Crown” for Netflix, also did not immediately respond to questions posed by CNN.
Salary parity has long been a hot topic in Hollywood, but is more so now with the #MeToo and Times Up movements casting light on the treatment of women.
In January, there was controversy after reports surfaced that Michelle Williams received less than 1% of Mark Wahlberg’s paycheck for reshoots on their film, “All the Money in the World.”
Wahlberg was reportedly paid $1.5 million for the scenes, while Williams received less than $1,000.
The actor later announced he would donate to his fees to the Time’s Up legal defense fund in his costar’s name.
Foy won Golden Globe and SAG Awards for her work on the “The Crown.”
New actors will take over Foy and Smith in the third and fourth seasons of the series, set in the royal couple’s later years.
Speaking to the Guardian before the launch of “The Crown’s” second season, Foy described her frustration over cultural norms for women and expressed her desire to confront them through her work.
“You’re told as a young woman what’s attractive, what’s acceptable, what’s the right or wrong way to be,” Foy said. “If all the women in the world suddenly went: ‘I’ve just realized I can’t be arsed with this any more.'”