‘The Crown’ producers: we paid Matt Smith more than Claire Foy

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The Crown’s producer, creative director and production designer did a panel discussion for the INTV Conference in Israel this week. Andy Harries is the CEO of the production company Left Bank, Suzanne Mackie is the creative director and Martin Childs is the production designer. And they broke some news at the panel discussion and the news has – I feel – tainted The Crown. Did you know that in a series which is literally about the Queen, the actress playing the queen makes less money than the actor playing the queen’s husband? It’s true.

The show, which already broke records as one of the most expensive series ever made, will also face budget hikes as they seek to negotiate new deals with actors. “We’re victims of our own success, but so is Netflix,” said Harries. “The Ryan Murphy deal is a problem for us all.”

Each episode of the first two seasons cost about 5 million pounds ($7 million), and shot for 22 days. “We put that money on the screen,” said Harries, adding that Claire Foy had 120 different costumes in the second season.

Asked whether Foy was paid the same as Smith, the producers acknowledged that he 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,” said Mackie.

[From Variety]

Matt Smith was more of a “name” coming into The Crown than Claire Foy. But let’s be real: CLAIRE FOY WAS PLAYING THE QUEEN. In a series about the Queen! You could make the argument that producers should have insisted on equal pay between Smith and Foy, considering the fact that so much of the first two seasons were about the Elizabeth and Philip and they had somewhat equal storylines. But they didn’t even make that argument. The default for every producer, it seems, is to just pay the dude more. Time’s Up on that sh-t.

The showrunner also said that they’re going to introduce Camilla Shand/Parker Bowles in Season 3, and young Diana too. They start filming the third season this summer.

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Photos courtesy of ‘The Crown’.

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84 Responses to “‘The Crown’ producers: we paid Matt Smith more than Claire Foy”

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  1. tracking says:

    I can understand the discrepancy for Season 1, but the fact this was not rectified for Season 2 is complete and utter bullshit.

    • Lindy79 says:

      Especially since Claire was the one getting award nominations

      • tracking says:

        Yes, and was the clear breakout star anchoring the whole damn thing!

      • lucy2 says:

        Exactly – he may have been more well known (which should have lead to equal pay, not star and supporting), but she became more well known after that first season. She became the draw for everyone and for all the awards attention.

      • Dita von Katzhausen says:

        This show centers around the Queen, she is the Queen, how can she not be paid, to be the main actor????? That is seriously f***ed up.

    • mom2two says:

      Agreed. Especially after Foy was racking up awards nominations and wins for season 1. I can see the reason for the pay difference due to his “name” but season 2, they should have had equal pay. Claire Foy carried that show in the first two seasons. I tune in for her and I will tune in for Olivia Coleman.

      I wonder who they will get to play young Camilla? Young Diana? I am kind of rooting for Ellie Bamber as young Diana, even though she’s not as tall as Diana was (she is a natural blonde then her current reddish hair).

      • Lindy79 says:

        Have there been any rumours on who will play Camilla and Diana? I have to say I’m very interested in how that is handled and will play out on screen.
        I’m always here for Olivia Coleman, she is a treasure.

      • mom2two says:

        @Lindy79, I have not heard any rumors about casting Camilla or Diana. There is a rumor they are considering Hugh Laurie for Phillip, though.

      • SKF says:

        One name that popped up for Diana and that I am all here for is Elizabeth Debicki. It’s such a tough role but I think she could pull it off.
        Although apparently Ryan has been trying to get her for Feud as Diana too…

    • Rumi says:

      Completely agree, she was the breakout star and the lead. In season 2 she should’ve been paid more than Matt Smith.
      Her performance was brilliant.

    • Frome says:

      I don’t even understand that first season. Matt Smith was a name among Dr Who fans but thats about it. And even there he inherited a 40 year long established part, he did not create a new fan base. Furthermore, genre fans do not follow the actors to new projects. If they did, the casts of Star Wars and Star Trek would have been box office gold. Only one of them (Harrison Ford) became that. The tiny handful Dr Who fans who followed Matt Smith to The Crown would have found it anyway without him. Besides, this show couldn’t be more different from Dr Who and he wasn’t coming with demonstrated acting chops. As it turns out, he was the worst member of the cast.

      This salary was the result of patriarchal thinking. People simply do not interrogate a white mans worth as they do everyone else’s. There’s a salary range for men and producers just won’t bat an eyelid if you ask within this range.

      • LAK says:

        Matt may have been known only to the Doctor Who fans, but Claire was completely unknown.

        Netflix would have demanded a known name star regardless of the subject matter because that’s how Netflix rolls for their big money projects.

        When you follow the development of the series, the fact that the writer was renown for other projects, THE QUEEN, FROST / NIXON, THE OTHER BOLYEN GIRL, THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND wasn’t getting them any bites. Netflix was the final call after being rejected by other studios. And the first series is chokeful of name stars for similar reasons. I bet they were all paid more than Claire.

        Finally, contracts were negotiated at the beginning of season 1. Her agents didn’t revisit after her star turn and award nominations and wins. She should change agents.

      • Frome says:

        Even if that were true, Matt Smith was neither a household name nor a pedigree actor. He is still neither of these things. The fact that Netflix execs took him to be one is just evidence of an internalised pro white guy bias. They routinely over estimate these guys audience pull and this would be a classic example. And they dont seem to understand audiences either. A natural crossover between Dr Who and The Crown audiences is small and to make matters worse, Netflix already airs Dr Who so any hardcore Matt Smith fans are already on the service anyway.

        But I suppose we should be glad they didn’t just plop Taylor Kitsch in the part and call it a day

      • Lou says:

        John Lithgow was the name actor to pull people to the Crown. It worked, and he did a good job! I could understand him getting a larger salary, but not Matt. And ESPECIALLY not in Season 2.

        I had already heard of Claire Foy from Wolf Hall, so she wasn’t completely unknown to everyone.

    • Prairiegirl says:


    • Marissa says:

      I came here to say exactly this. They have no excuse for not paying her more in season 2.

    • Arpeggi says:

      I agree, and it’s so frustrating that that’s what I was screaming at my screen yesterday when I 1st read the news. Seriously, if the freackin’ (TV) Queen on a show about her cannot manage to make more than her Prince Consort even if she has more screen time, how bad is it for the rest of us, real-life commoners? I’ve read some dude comparing it to Reeve making less for Superman than Brando as a proof that it’s not about sexism, but FFS, that was in 1978!!!

      This shows how important it is to know your colleagues’ salaries, it’s even more important if you’re a woman and/or a POC. Even when you’re in a union and have salary scales, even when pay equity is a law, if you don’t you might not be earning what you should… I was reminded this the hard way last fall when I was renegotiating my salary and asked a colleague 3 years my junior with less management duties than I have how much he was making: turns out that ever since his hiring, he was making $5/hr more than I did as he was scaled higher than I was. The worst part was that my (new) boss and I then had to fight with HR to get them to raise my salary so that it’d be equal to his. I love my job, but I almost quit because of that.

    • Miss Melissa says:

      I call BS on them until they write Foy a check to make up for it.

      That’s the only way you actually DO rectify it, folks.

  2. Eleonor says:

    Of course they were (rolleye) like Ellen Pompeo who plays Meredith Grey in Grey’s Anatomy and for years didn’t have the same salary of her costar, and Gillan Anderson who a decade later had to fight to get equal pay.

  3. xdanix says:

    Totally agree with tracking- he was a lot more famous than her coming into season 1, and like it or not, that’s how these things work. But by season 2? When she was nominated for/winning awards left and right and CLEARLY carrying the show? This should have been fixed.

    I see they’ve said they’ll rectify the situation going forward for future “Queens” but does that mean anything with regards to Claire?

    • tracking says:

      She should have at least received an enormous bonus or something. It’s insane. The only good news is that her newfound fame led to other big projects. Presumably her compensation will be adequate for those.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      But nobody was drawn to The Crown because of Matt Smith. I would argue that nobody outside the UK or Dr. Who fans knew his name. The show was never marketed based on names, only based on the story and premise.

      I do think going forward this did a lot more for her career than his so thank god for that.

      • FLORC says:

        I watched the crown because of the Doctor Who association. Just like I watch Viscious for Ian McKellen. It’s unfair, but he is a pull. And still unfair, but many instances a guest star or lesser role, but bigger name are paid more than regulars or stars.

      • littlemissnaughty says:

        Of course someone was going to come out and contradict what I wrote. But I’m not budging. Because they were NOT banking on the Dr. Who fans to make this a success, even in part. Not with that insane budget.

      • ORIGINAL T.C. says:

        I almost stopped watching the show after the first few episodes because he was so horrible. It’s like Claire is in a serious drama and he in circus playing the clown falling out of the car. I thought it was a bad joke gone wrong. There was nothing “real” about the person he was trying to convey (Phillip). I’m used to watching British actors at the top of their game even in small roles, I had second hand embarrassment for him.

        I kept watching *inspite* of him because Foy draws you in. You cannot look away from her expressive eyes and the intelligence hiding there. It is sad to know the only bad actor on the show was the one payed the most. They better write her a big check!

      • Stini says:

        “Doctor Who fans” aren’t a tiny sci-fi niche in the UK, though. Doctor Who is one of the biggest shows on the biggest terrestrial television station. The changing of Doctors is front page news, the show screens at 7pm on Saturday evenings, when everyone’s watching, and there’s a feature-length special on every Christmas Day. The actors who have played the Doctor carry major star power in the UK because of that.

      • Jussie says:

        Exactly Stini. Doctor Who isn’t a weird little sci-fi show in the UK, it’s absolutely huge and beloved by people of all ages.

        I’m sure David Tennant got more than Olivia Coleman for Broadchurch based on Doctor Who as well.

        The ‘Doctors’ may not become A-list in the worldwide mega-star sense, but they build up an enormous amount of goodwill during their runs, and this there’s a lot of excitement when they come back to TV.

      • FLORC says:

        I meant they pulled me in with the DW association. I’m an American and unless you’re a historical Anglo buff you weren’t thinking of the crown. DW can’t be denied as a pull imo. How major is up for debate.

        Is it fair? No. Was he bad in It? Yes. Did DW bring major name recognition for side base viewers? Yes. However, I’m not familiar with his work further than DW and that pride, prejudice zombie film.

    • Veronica says:

      Was he? I’m honestly asking. I’m not British, so I don’t know if he’s a mainstay there. I know of Matt Smith because I know people into Dr. Who, but outside of that, I’d have no idea who he was.

      You can make the argument that experience influenced the pay here, but even that’s a little faulty – Foy has been working in the industry since 2008, and her turn on Wolf Hall got her critical acclaim. She’s not a household name, but she’s not a nobody in the industry, either. I don’t really see a justification here for a massive pay difference, particularly into season 2.

  4. Ib says:


  5. Cee says:

    I agree with everyone who’s already posted: seemed reasonable for season 1 but not for season 2. They should have had at least EQUAL PAY.

    I’m glad Olivia Coleman will get her due but U’m sad Foy was paid unjustly.

    • Tina says:

      I don’t think they’re telling the truth. I don’t think they’re going to pay Olivia Colman more than Hugh Laurie.

      • Jay says:

        If they were to pay Olivia Coleman more, then Hugh Laurie would have to take a huge pay cut (assuming he does it, which I dunno, maybe). Because Hugh Laurie was the lead on a US Network show for MANY years and would have the paychecks to back up his quote. Especially because I think they were paying him an insane amount towards the end because he didn’t want to live in the US anymore. Olivia Coleman, is a brilliant actress but has done British television which pays a lot less, so her quote is going to be a lot less. Her series she’s done have also had fewer episodes than a regular season of House, and fewer seasons. They (Netflix) presumably already have a deal with Olivia Coleman. So if Hugh Laurie is negotiating, then his reps will be asking to match his quote or at least get somewhat near it. Netflix will have to decide if they want to pay breakage for him, and pay him more than Olivia, or insist on paying her more, in which case, he could very well pass.

    • Amelie says:

      I really hope they pay Olivia Colman fairly. She was brilliant on Broadchurch with David Tennant (which is available on Netflix, only 3 seasons) which is how I discovered her. Her character really goes through the wringer and I will probably start watching The Crown just because of her.

  6. Umyeah says:

    I hate Netflixs reaction, instead of saying the Queen will make the most money why not say the main character with the most screen time will be paid most on all our shows.

  7. minx says:

    It have to say Matt Smith hooked my husband into watching the series with me–he’s a huge Doctor fan.

  8. Elaine says:

    For Season 2, I blame her agent. He/She should have put in a MFN* clause after it was clear Claire -as THE QUEEN- was gaining much deserved accolades, elevating and legitimizing the quality of the entire series.

    I want to start picketing these agents who won’t fight for their clients. Michelle Williams agent for ‘All the Money in the World’ can go suck balls. And the person who saw Claire Foy’s brilliance and simply shrugged, also needs a delete.

    I’m starting to understand the dog-whistle press around ‘difficult’ actresses. Now I see. When they say ‘Difficult’ what they mean is: ‘Jane actually wanted us to pay her to be used and thrown away after we no longer think she is hott! SO difficult! Poor us! Will no one think of the sleazy producers/directors profiting off her talent?! *whine* *moan*’

    #TimesUp indeed.
    *M.F.N. Most Favored Nation status. This is a clause in the contract where it is specified that no one but NO ONE gets paid more than you do. What they get paid, you get paid. Its a bad-arse, muthafrickin’ clause that my Daddy taught me to never leave home without 😉

    • Frome says:

      Don’t fall for the “it’s all the agents fault” narrative. Agents get a share of the actresses salary so they already have an interest in hitting the best deals possible. Their challenge is that the market place is so heavily distorted against actresses. A figure that would be insulting to a male actor s simply not viewed the same way when it’s offered to a woman of the same status. And because this is the normal range offered to actresses, another woman will more than happily take the parts you have rejected. Add to that the fact that women (except Meryl Streep) are considered interchangeable and disposable and you can see why the agents want to protect their clients ability to book work over their earning potential on each project.

      It’s a societal problem but the only way to change fast is to re-educate producers. Claires pay should have been the salary ceiling for the Prince Philip character. If Matt didn’t want it then he is perfectly disposable and replaceable. Get someone else who will take it, even if he is unknown.

    • Meggles says:

      Doctor Who has worked on MFN clauses before, when they had to bring in loads of big guest names.

      As for Foy I would assume she signed a two-year contract at the start, hence no room to renegotiate salary after year one. Not trying to justify it because it’s awful.

      • Elaine says:

        Agree @Meggles. Her contract should have had room for negiotiation if Season 1 did well. That’s a standard, often used clause. That’s why Producers try to lock in actors before the first movie is released /season is screened 😉

        @Frome, I get that the agent has a vested interested, but they are also interested in keeping Producers ‘on side’ and not rocking the boat knowing another actress will scoop-up opportunities.

        That’s why you need a bad-arse negotiating for you. Not from a point of fear “take it or she will!!!’ but from a position of knowing your worth. They will sell you. Make them pay for the pleasure of doing so.

        Its like that scene in Wonder Woman. When Robin Wright smacks Diana’s weapon out of her hand. You expect the battle to be fair. It isn’t. And it will never be. They will try to screw you. Prepare accordingly.

    • LAK says:

      What Elaine and Neggles said.

  9. T.Fanty says:

    Honestly – and as a disclaimer, I have only watched season one – I kind of felt, watching the show, that it was told from Philip’s point of view. It doesn’t surprise me that this was regarded at a Matt Smith project.

    • Natalie S says:

      Yes, and it carries on in season two. I’m wondering if in the negotiations, Matt Smith was assured of getting significant story lines and that eventually took away from some of the development of Clare’s Elizabeth.

    • xdanix says:

      I kind of agree with you there- I’ve seen a number of articles saying that they really wanted to tell Philip’s story.

      However, I think they’ve gone about it very badly, to be honest. In 2 seasons we’ve almost NEVER witnessed a good side to him. Yes, I understand that he struggled with his role after the marriage, blah blah, but we’ve never even been shown what made the Queen fall in love with him and be so determined to marry him. There’s been almost no redeeming moments, or moments where he was nice to his wife or even anyone. I can only think of 1 or 2 episodes I’ve found him even vaguely likeable or even tolerable, and those were ones in which he was featured very little. For the most part of the last two seasons I’ve found him to be very whiny, extremely sorry for himself and mostly awful.

      Now, I don’t know whether that’s due to the writing, the acting, or some combination of the two. But I do know that it’s Claire Foy (and Vanessa Kirby and later Matthew Goode, though we got precious little time with him) and her tremendous performance as the Queen, that has kept me watching long after Smith’s Philip would have made me quit, and I know from talking with other viewers that I’m not alone in feeling that way.

      • mom2two says:

        Agree. I am sure real life Prince Phillip is not as bad as he is portrayed in The Crown (or at least I hope he is more likable in real life). Most of the time Smith looks like he is sucking on a sour lemon; he was okay for what the role required of him but there is a reason he is not getting award accolades.

      • Arpeggi says:

        @mom2two, actually, TV Philip is probably nicer than real life Philip. At least this one doesn’t spend the time he’s not sulking and cheating on his wife making racist comments. Lizzie married for love (and lust, Philip was gorgeous), but he married for a lifestyle he felt entitled to even if his family have lost everything

      • minx says:

        Philip was very good looking when he was young (still is I suppose) so he had that going for him. I can see why she would have been attracted to him. But The Crown portrayed him as such a whining, complaining infant. If that is what he is really like I don’t know how she has put up wth him.

    • Bridget says:

      Kind of? In a show about The Queen, she’s one of the thinnest written. It’s TERRIBLE.

  10. Ada says:

    UGH. Honestly, how many people watched the Crown because of Matt Smith? loved him as a whimsical hipster time lord, but definitely did not tune into the show to see his take on this racist curmudgeon foot-in-mouther. I’m sure some “complex audience analysis” went into this decision, but it just angers me so much, maybe because I’d been a fan of Foy before the Crown (she was amazing in that weird film Wreckers and a steel-spirited, sharp-tongued Anne Boleyn for a whole new generation in Wolf Hall – teetering perfectly between snappy caricature and touching bravado).

    I hope they pay her back the difference retroactively.

    • WendyNerd says:

      Loved her in Wolf Hall and, a lesser known role as Adora Belle Dearheart in Going Postal.

      • VirgiliaCoriolanus says:

        I thought she was really good in Wolf Hall, but how her character was written was horrible. I am a huge Anne Boleyn fan, and they basically made her into this snappish rude character who is so secure in her position before she married to Henry VIII that she is rude to Cromwell at the first meeting. Which feeds into her being arrogant and entitled and “seducing” Henry VIII. Not. Also hated Cromwell!

      • WendyNerd says:

        Agreed, but I saw it as written from Cromwell’s perspective, hence her shrewishness. TBH I’ve yet to find a fictional Anne Boleyn portrayal that’s made me happy.

      • VirgiliaCoriolanus says:

        Have you seen Genevieve Bujold’s turn as Anne Boleyn? I can’t remember the name of it, but Richard Burton was Henry VIII. I really liked that one. I got into Tudors, but even I hated how unstable they made Anne seem, although I think Jonathan Rhys Meyers was a perfect bratty/whiny Henry….

        I also hated Cromwell in Wolf Hall, as a) he was never a family man, and b) nothing EVER seemed to affect him and he never seemed to believe in anything….but we were supposed to think he was this loyal, loyal man. He came off as very #menzcryTOO while they’re stabbing you in the back. Only people I liked in WH were Claire Foy and Damien Lewis.

      • LAK says:

        VC: i love Genevieve Bujold’s take. The film is called ANNE OF A THOUSAND DAYS.

        I’m with you guys vis a vis how Anne is portrayed. Natalie Portman made me want to throw things at the screen.

        Speaking of consorts, the way Eleanor of Acquitaine is portrayed in BECKET though she’s better written in THE LION IN WINTER and the tv show Empire – the cookie character.

      • VirgiliaCoriolanus says:

        *Anne of a Thousand Days

  11. Patty says:

    Season One makes sense; Hollywood is a business and Matt Smith was the bigger name. But yeah, Claire’s people should have renogiated her deal once it was clear that she was the break-out star. I think there’s a combination of factors at play when it comes to pay discrepancy; one of which appears to be that a lot of actresses have shit representation.

  12. WendyNerd says:

    Not surprising. The show, in its scripting, was absurdly sexist. Obsessed with treating male characters as the most important and put upon creatures on Earth, glorifying their douchedom. Half of season one was YET ANOTHER Churchill biopic, ffs. Whereas the female characters — including, absurdly ELIZABETH, but also Margaret and the Queen Mum were under-written and usually portrayed as unqualified, ignorant children who needed men’s help with everything. Literally, the Queen Mum, who Hitler called “The Most Dangerous Woman in Europe” was portrayed as little more than a whining, snobby bystander. Margaret was no more than a hopeless, petty, mess. And Elizabeth couldn’t even hold her own gun on her own and constantly needed things mansplained to her. After two seasons, I had very little of her character in my head in terms of her social views, her parenting, her relationships with other women aside from her fights with her mother and sister (because women are catty and never get along, yo), like, say, with Margaret Rhodes?!?! Half the show was devoted to Philip’s smug self-importance and trying to justify his terrible behavior because of his MAN PAIN. Like, I’m not Philip fangirl, but if I were Philip, I’d be offended at being portrayed as such a whiny little shit. Yet it’s framed as him being clever and justified somehow. We get more on how various men (Philip, Tony Armstrong Jones, Mountbatten, Anthony Eden, that secretary douche) are so put upon because of their wives. And it’s all framed like we’re supposed to be sympathetic to their non-existent plights.

    Sorry, but I’m sick of these shows that CLAIM to be about powerful women that are, in fact, riddled in misogyny. Between this and Game of Thrones, I’m starting to think that people will ignore any level of sexist smegma on screen as long as one or more female characters is called a queen. At this point, I’m no longer going to trust shows about women when they’re created by men or with a writer’s room that is any less than 60% estrogen. I am THAT done with this bullshit.

    • littlemissnaughty says:

      Oof. I guess we watched different shows. The things you criticise aren’t necessarily portrayed that way because writers and producers are sexist but because the times were. The men did not come across well, at all. They came across as mansplaining, arrogant, and condescendingly sexist. Because they were. That is no reflection on the women. Who were raised to marry well. That was it. Elizabeth was then later raised to be a figurehead. They led sheltered lives and when E became Queen, she did of course need some help (although frankly, I didn’t think she was portrayed as needing it so much as just receiving it whether she wanted to or not) because she thought she had more time.

      Devoting that much time to Philip was unnecessary, imo. But he was portrayed as a complete assh*le. I don’t see how anyone is supposed to watch that and feel sympathetic. He’s a rich, whining manbaby in season 2.

      • WendyNerd says:

        I said framing. As in, choices writers made in how they chose to portray the BS. Framing. Look it up.

    • scylla74 says:

      Wendy I completly agree with you, I have not seen the Crown… but this is pretty much because I could no longer stand to watch GOT. The misogyny is mindblowing.

  13. anna says:


  14. Svea says:

    Total effery. Am disgusted.

  15. magnoliarose says:

    I don’t even think he should have been paid more for Season 1. He’s not that big of a star to warrant it. Season 2 is inexcusable.
    They need to write her a big bonus and rectify the situation. It is bad press and yet another example of women being paid less for no reason at all.

  16. Lisa says:

    This is not cool. It has tainted The Crown for me

  17. HollyGo says:

    i don’t see the big deal here. I suppose it can be argued whether or not Smith really did have more profile to justify that higher pay but the problem really only lies in the fact that it’s about the Queen and the two actors are actually quite near to each other in public profile.
    Big names that pull viewers will get paid more. That’s obvious. Does anyone really think Hugh Laurie will be getting paid less than Olivia Coleman if he plays Prince Phillip? Unless his screen time is significantly less, the answer will be no.

  18. Eva says:

    Yes I think this is wrong but the real question is: did Foy ever ASK for more? Even after the success of season 1?

    Us women really have to start demanding what belongs to us. Like Pompeo said, no one’s just going to give it.

    • Arpeggi says:

      You know that actors don’t do the bargaining, right? They have agents for that stuff. And agents can only do so much if they too don’t have the full picture and access to the numbers.

    • Veronica says:

      Hard bargaining doesn’t always work to women’s favor, either. They’re far more likely to be viewed as “demanding” or “entitled” when requesting proper compensation for their labor than men are.

  19. Betsy says:

    No, but really, who is Matt Smith? I’m not a Whovian, and I think I’ve only once or twice since his gummy bear pleated face and so I say again, who is Matt Smith?

    • Sansa says:

      Agreed. Claire Foy’s going to have a long career and nobody is going to to know who he is 20 years from now. Sometimes the job is more important then the pay. Claire’s work in this will leverage her to greaterer wealth then he will have. Things aren’t fair you just learn and she’ll ask for more next time.

  20. Bianca says:

    This is scandalous, Foy IS the show.

  21. Jess says:

    This news is so disappointing. Maybe a few people knew Matt Smith but the primary reason people wanted to watch this show is because it’s about the Queen and the reason we kept watching is because of Claire Foy’s amazing work (and Princess Margaret – I would watch an entire show about her). But despite all of that Matt Smith gets paid more and this past season was about his pouting. This is just more evidence of even when women are supposedly front and center, men still get the money and the priority. Ugh.

  22. Jay says:

    Here is the thing, its not really about Matt Smith being better known than Claire Foy, its because he was the lead of a show for several years and has a “quote” of how much he was paid for it. He then expects to match that amount on jobs going forward (unless its like an indie movie for scale or whatever). Most actors don’t like taking pay cuts for projects that can pay, like a Netflix series. Claire is a brilliant actress but has not lead a series until the Crown, so her quote would be much lower. The other issue is the starting point. Agents tend to get more for their white male clients, they fight for them more (i have seen this happen much to my irritation) and ingrained racism means people of color and women are offered less at the start, or a lot of the time they are playing the wives and sidekicks or best friends, not the leads, so they are offered less, which means when they then ARE offered a bigger part, they get offered less than a white dude and they are generally told to take it because its a great opportunity, and they don’t always realize how much of a discrepancy there is in pay. The quote system though is really how this ends up happening and its a frustrating enraging thing with negotiations.

    Plus in Hollywood, men get paid more than women. I know this for a fact because when I first got promoted to Producer, they bumped up my pay so that I would be paid the same as a male ASSISTANT who had less experience as an ASSISTANT than I did, and by then I was even a producer. But its ok because it just made me MUCH smarter about negotiations and now I negotiate hard and am doing fine. But women need to be smart and not accept less, that is what I learned because when I first got this job my boss pressured me into taking the shitty pay telling me I could not get more and it was a great opportunity blah blah blah, and then I found out the dude with less experience than me, who I quickly surpassed, DID in fact get more. Do not let a man tell you that you are not worth it and you should not make waves. Eff that. Be strong!

    • Jay says:

      forgot to add that for season two, her agents should have renegotiated her deal to get her more because of the awards, but every show will lock talent in for a multi-year deal, dictating their rate for future seasons as well. There are standard bumps up.

  23. ladida says:

    Wow, I’m disgusted. It really doesn’t matter if smith had a “bigger name.” EQUAL PAY FOR EQUAL WORK.

  24. No Doubtful says:

    This makes me upset because it is blatant sexism. I had no clue who either of them were before the series began, but she was definitely in the STARRING ROLE and deserved to be paid MORE than him. He was barely in some of the episodes! Disgusting.

  25. Jayna says:

    it is all down to Claire and her agent to negotiate a much better deal going into the second season or renegotiate. That’s how it’s done. And it’s what some actresses said women have to learn, to negotiate like a man is used to doing. Her agent didn’t lobby hard enough for her going into the second season. I imagine they had no clue what Matt made.

    “Because I didn’t fight hard enough,” Lawrence told 60 Minutes. “It was my own mentality that led me to believe that I didn’t deserve to be paid equally.”

    To be clear, Lawrence’s situation differs from those experienced by women and people of color who have also historically earned less than their white, male peers . “I didn’t want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need,” she wrote of her American Hustle negotiations in 2015. But finding that power to negotiate, as evidenced by her story, can be applied universally.

    When negotiating her salary, Lawrence said she didn’t want to come off as “difficult” or “spoiled” — qualities she said she doubts her male co-stars worried about. “If anything, I’m sure they were commended for being fierce and tactical, while I was busy worrying about coming across as a brat and not getting my fair share,” Lawrence wrote in the 2015 op-ed.”

  26. Flaming Oh says:

    David Tennant has openly said that he and Olivia were on favored nation contracts for Broadchurch and how he hopes that will become more the norm and something he will be increasingly conscious about. Overpaid actors like Smith and producers need to fear the consequences of not insisting on this #timesup.

  27. Ms says:

    Let’s see if they pull that when the amazing Olivia Colman plays the Queen, coming hot off the heels of Broadchurch and The Night Manager.

  28. Mari says:

    Nope. It’s a series about the Queen, which makes the actress that plays The Queen the star. She should be paid as much as or more than Smith. They owe her back pay. This jig is up.