As if by royal decree, Netflix is making changes to ensure that the gender pay gap becomes a thing of the past.
Last March, news broke that Claire Foy earned less than her co-star Matt Smith on The Crown, despite playing a role with significantly more screen time. Left Bank Productions, the creators of The Crown, increased Foy’s salary and released a statement saying, “Going forward, no one gets paid more than the Queen.”
The disparity was remedied, but even more importantly, Netflix took a hard look at their productions, both in-house and third-party, and adjusted them accordingly. Without specifying actors or productions, Netflix content chief Ted Sarandos revealed at the Makers Conference in California they were able to find “a couple of other ones we were able to adjust.” He continued by saying that the complicated issue is emblematic of the industry as a whole.
This change comes amid a series of pay gap corrections on other shows such as Westworld which committed to equal pay for equal roles for its actors last spring.
Sarandos denied having a direct hand in the pay gap on The Crown, but he took that as a learning opportunity and applied the lesson across the board, reports Vanity Fair. The change didn’t just apply to the actors, but also on an executive level. Sarandos mentioned increasing the salary of an unnamed female executive whose male peers were getting paid more for the same position.
With huge networks such as Netflix and HBO getting on board with equal pay, it seems only a matter of time before salary disparity seems as much a thing of the past as season 1 of The Crown.