Claire Foy was paid less than Matt Smith for Netflix’s The Crown. Here’s how much she made per episode

The Crown actor Matt Smith was paid more than his co-star and the show’s lead, Claire Foy, the producers of Netflix’s expensive drama have said.

tv Updated: Mar 14, 2018 09:49 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Claire Foy,Matt Smith,The Crown
This image released by Netflix shows Claire Foy, centre, and Matt Smith, right, in a scene from The Crown. (AP)

The producers of Netflix’s The Crown, a lavish drama that charts the evolution of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II over a planned six decades, have confessed that Matt Smith, who plays Prince Philip, was paid more than Claire Foy, who plays the Queen. Speaking at a conference in Jerusalem, the producers said that the show costs approximately $7 million per episode to produce, and that “all the money is on the screen.”

“We’re victims of our own success, but so is Netflix,” said Andy Harries, CEO of Left Bank Pictures, according to a Variety report. “The Ryan Murphy deal is a problem for us all,” he said, referring to Netflix’s record-breaking deal to lure producer Ryan Murphy into the mix.

Both Smith and Foy have since been replaced in the lead roles - not because of any dispute, but because that was the plan all along. Olivia Colman will take on the role of The Queen, Helena Bonham Carter will replace Vanessa Kirby as Princess Margaret, and it has been rumoured that Hugh Laurie is being eyed to play Prince Philip.

Actors Claire Foy, who plays Queen Elizabeth II, and Matt Smith who plays Philip Duke of Edinburgh, attend the premiere of The Crown Season 2 in London,. (REUTERS)

The producers said that Smith was paid more than Foy because he was a more established star, thanks to his lead role in Doctor Who. Meanwhile, several people took to Twitter to express outrage at the pay disparity, especially because the show rests on Foy’s shoulders, and she has won a Golden Globe for her performance.

“Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen,” the producers said. According to the BBC, Foy was reportedly paid $40,000 (£28,000, Rs 18 lakhs) per episode for the first two series. It is unclear what Smith was paid. “The Crown is one of the most expensive television shows ever produced, costing about $130m (£93m, Rs 844 crore) for the first season alone,” the BBC reports.

The controversy comes just months after it was revealed that Mark Wahlberg was paid $1 million for the unplanned reshoots that took place for Ridley Scott’s All the Money in the World, while his co-star, Michelle Williams was paid $80 a day. Wahlberg later donated his earning to the Time’s Up fund, but not before several of their peers expressed outrage.

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First Published: Mar 14, 2018 09:47 IST