"The Crown" producers apologize for pay gap between male and female leads

Posted on: March 20th, 2018 by ABC News No Comments

Netflix/Robert Viglasky(LOS ANGELES) — Recently, news broke that Claire Foy, who plays Queen Elizabeth in Netflix’s The Crown, was making a less-than-queenly salary when compared to Matt Smith, who plays Prince Edward.

The outrage led to a petition for Smith and the streaming giant to pony up the difference.  Now, the disparity has also led to an apology from series producers, Left Bank Pictures.

The actors “have found themselves at the centre of a media storm this week through no fault of their own,” the lengthy mea culpa reads in part, also noting, “we at Left Bank Pictures are responsible for budgets and salaries; the actors are not aware of who gets what, and cannot be held personally responsible for the pay of their colleagues.”

The producers’ statement also said they “understand and appreciate the conversation” about wage parity and are “absolutely united with the fight for fair pay, free of gender bias, and for a rebalancing of the industry’s treatment of women, both those in front of the camera and for those behind the scenes.” 

The statement concludes: “As company policy we are engaged in conversations with [equality groups] ERA 50:50 and going forward are keen to talk to Times Up UK; organisations which are working to ensure all women have a voice.”

The Crown executive producer Suzanne Mackie had suggested last week that Smith was paid more because the former Doctor Who star had more experience, but then said that no longer will apply, adding, “It’s really important for the Queen to be paid more.”  However, Tuesday’s statement does not directly say that the Foy-Smith wage disparity has been addressed.

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