The Crown’s Claire Foy ‘receives £200,000 back payment’ after gender pay gap scandal

Main character Foy was earning less per episode than her co-star Matt Smith

Claire Foy arrives at the "The Crown" FYC event at the Saban Media Center at the Television Academy on Friday, April 27, 2018, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP)
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British actor Claire Foy is set to receive thousands of pounds in back pay for her part in Netflix series The Crown after it was revealed she was paid less than her male co-star Matt Smith, according to reports.

Last month, producers apologised to Foy, 34, who stars as main character Queen Elizabeth II in the royal saga but was reportedly paid £10,000 (Dh50,400) an episode less than Smith, 35, who stars as her on-screen husband Prince Philip.

Foy, whose credits include The Promise and Wolf Hall, has since been given a £200,000 back payment to make up for the discrepancy, according to the Mail on Sunday.

"The difference in the wages between Matt and Claire in the 20 episodes of the show so far was backdated. It has all been amicably resolved," a source told the newspaper.

Producers had previously defended the decision, saying that Smith’s bigger pay packet was down to his six-year stint as Dr Who, a hugely popular show internationally.

He told the Hollywood Reporter: "Claire is one of my best friends and I believe that we should be paid equally and fairly and there should be equality for all. I support her completely and I’m pleased that it was resolved and they made amends for it because that’s what needed to happen."

In this image released by Netflix, Claire Foy, right, and Matt Smith in a scene from "The Crown," premiering its second season on Friday,  (Robert Viglasky/Netflix via AP)
Claire Foy, right, and Matt Smith in a scene from series two of The Crown. Robert Viglasky / Netflix via AP

The Crown is believed to be the most expensive television series ever made at a reported £9.42m per episode. However, writer Peter Morgan has said this figure has been exaggerated.

Foy and Smith will be replaced for series three by British actors Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies respectively as the show moves away from the Queen’s early reign.

At a recent panel event, Foy said the experience had led her to have “the most extraordinary revelation about myself and womankind” in answer to a question about the pay gap.

"You asking me that question is probably the first time in my career that anybody has ever asked me about being a woman in this industry, or just being a woman in general, and to me I find that amazing," she told reporters at the Hollywood event.


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