‘The Crown’ Pay Gap: Over 22,000 People Sign Petition Urging Matt Smith to Donate Salary to Time’s Up

Producers of the Netflix drama confirmed this month Matt Smith was paid more than star Claire Foy.
The Crown - Phillip - Introducing Prince Philip
"The Crown"
Robert Viglasky / Netflix

A new petition launched by the social network Care2 is urging “The Crown” star Matt Smith to donate part of his salary from the series to Time’s Up. The petition is a reaction to the news that the actor has been receiving a larger paycheck than series star Claire Foy.

The pay gap was confirmed by producers Suzanne Mackie and Andy Harries at the INTV Conference in Jerusalem earlier this month. The producers said Smith was being paid more because of his popularity from “Doctor Who.” Foy was mostly unknown when she was cast and became a breakout actress because of the show’s success.

“You know gender pay gaps are a problem when even the Queen isn’t paid fairly,” the petition states. “While it may be easy for some to dismiss gender pay disparity for already high-paid actors like Claire Foy, I believe that publically adresssing high-profile cases of sexism will also help create greater opportunities for all women — in all careers.”

As of the morning of March 19, the petition has earned over 22,000 signatures. A similar effort took place last December urging Mark Wahlberg to donate the money received for his work on the “All the Money in the World” reshoots to Time’s Up. Wahlberg was paid six-figures for the reshoots, while Michelle Williams took part in them for several thousand dollars. Wahlberg ended up donating his $1.5 million paycheck to Time’s Up in Williams’ name.

Although “The Crown’s” first two seasons included a pay gap between Foy and Smith, producer Mackie assures the gap will no longer be in effect as the show moves into Season 3. Unfortunately, Foy will not see a financial boost as she is no longer appearing as Elizabeth II. Olivia Coleman will be taking on the role when the show resumes after a time jump.

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