“That was what was reported that I was back-paid. I’ve never mentioned anything about it and neither have the producers. The fact that that is ‘fact’ is—not quite correct,” Claire said speaking to Al Arabiya for the upcoming film Girl in the Spider’s Web.
The British actress made headlines back in March when The Crown makers admitted during an Israeli television conference that she was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith.
This is in spite of the fact that Claire played The Crown lead as Queen Elizabeth II, and Matt played Prince Philip.
With producers arguing that this was due to Matt Smith having a higher acting profile than Claire, thousands of fans reacted with a petition calling for equal pay of the two.
By May The Daily Mail reported that production company Left Bank Pictures and Sony Pictures Television for Netflix would compensate Claire with £200,000 in back pay.
“Yes it’s Netflix, but it’s a British production company. It happened at the same time as it was coming out with a lot of other people that there was a lot of pay inequality across the board—in the music industry, in journalism, in every industry. It’s across the board that it became part of a bigger conversation, which is an odd place to find yourself in,” Claire continued.
However, Claire says she’s learned a great deal from the experience:
“I realised early on that me being quiet about it or me not thinking about it in any way, and not associating myself with it, would be harmful to me and also lots of other people. It’s taught me a lot, and I’m still learning about it. I have not come out the other side and know exactly what I’m talking about. I’m still learning as much as anybody else is.”
Claire starred as The Queen for the first series of Netflix The Crown and is starring as Lisbeth Salander in the upcoming The Girl in the Spider’s-Web.
The third season of The Crown is set to air in early 2019, with Olivia Coleman replacing Claire as The Queen.