Netflix pays its queen less than her consort on 'The Crown'

The Crown's Claire Foy was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith

It seems like another example of television's gender pay gap: executive producers of Netflix's drama The Crown have admitted that star Claire Foy, who played Queen Elizabeth, was paid less than Matt Smith, the supporting actor who played her husband, Prince Philip.

The part has earned her a host of award season nominations, including at the BAFTAs, Golden Globes, Emmys and Screen Actors Guild awards.

Speaking during the INTV conference in Jerusalem, executives from the production company Left Bank Pictures, which makes The Crown for Netflix, admitted Smith was paid more in the show's first two seasons because he had spent three years as star of the popular science fiction TV series Doctor Who.

Producers point to Smith's starring role in "Doctor Who" - he played the sci-fi hit's Eleventh Doctor from 2010 to 2014 - as the reason for him making more than Foy.

However, they also pledged to rectify the pay gap for future seasons.

This kind of embarrassing pay discrepancy won't happen again, producer Suzanne Mackie assured the panel audience: "Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen".

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Foy, however, will not be reprising her role as Queen Elizabeth.

The show is replacing its leads when filming begins in July, Olivia Colman is stepping in as the Queen. "I want to see an episode where Trump comes to Buckingham Palace", she said, and then mused about casting Harry and Meghan, who will Wednesday in May (18): "She could play herself", Mackie smiled.

Foy's agent did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Wednesday.

It was also confirmed during the event in Jerusalem that each episode in the first two seasons of the drama cost around £5 million (€5.6 million).

Her male counterpart Mark Wahlberg received a negotiated fee of $1.5 (€1.2) million.

Mark Wahlberg made news earlier this year when it was revealed that he was paid $1.5 million U.S. for reshoots on movie All the Money in the World, while co-star Michelle Williams received $1,000 US. Wahlberg donated $2 (€1.6) million to a fund dedicated to fighting pay inequality and harassment of women in the name of Williams.

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