The Crown Paid the Queen Less Than the Prince

Matt Smith and Claire Foy star in Netflix's 'The Crown.'

But the pay disparity between Smith and Foy - despite Foy's newcomer status before the show debuted, as the production company noted - sparked outrage from viewers who noted she was the star of the show and deserved better compensation compared to Smith.

According to Variety, on Tuesday, the show's producers said at the INTV Conference in Jerusalem that Foy, who won a Golden Globe for her work on the show previous year, made less money than her on-screen husband, actor Matt Smith. Foy received an estimated $40,000 per episode for her award-winning portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II, while Smith's salary for playing Prince Philip is unreported.

Though The Crown was Foy's breakout role and Smith was more of a known commodity, especially in the United States, the actress did headline the series as the main character.

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They said from now on, no actor on the show will make more than the Queen.

The cast will change for season three of The Crown to allow for the fact the royals are getting older.

We too frequently underpay women and underestimate their talent, yet lament when they don't have "star power". Olivia Colman will succeed Foy as the queen; it has not yet been announced who will replace Smith as Prince Philip.

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"Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen", said Left Bank creative director Suzanne Mackie, per Variety. Queen Elizabeth, 91, has a net worth of around $520 million, according to Wealth-X, a wealth insights firm, thanks to profits, real estate and collections that come from the Crown Estate and the Duke of Lancaster.

She earned a Golden Globe Award and a Screen Actor's Guild Awards for best actress following the first season.

Netflix's The Crown may be one of the most expensive series ever made, but whoever crafted the budget clearly wasn't thinking about the optics of paying the queen less than her male co-star. She was nominated for an Emmy for her role in 2017.

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