"The Crown" star Matt Smith opens up on pay gap controversy

Matt Smith, who starred as Prince Philip on "The Crown," has broken his silence on the controversy over the revelation that he was paid more than his female co-star Claire Foy, who wore the titular crown on the Netflix show.

During the Tribeca Film Festival, he told The Hollywood Reporter that he supports Foy, whom he calls one of his best friends, and that Netflix "made amends" for the pay disparity.

"I believe that we should be paid equally and fairly and there should be equality for all," he said. "I support her completely, and I'm pleased that it was resolved and they made amends for it because that's what needed to happen. Going forward, I think we should all bear in mind that we need to strive to make this better and a more even playing field for everyone involved — but not just in our industry, in all industries." Smith did not clarify what the "amends" were. 

In March, "Crown" producer Suzanne Mackie confirmed that Foy, who played Queen Elizabeth II, was paid less than Smith, who played her husband Prince Philip in the first two seasons of the series.

She explained that Smith was paid more because he was a bigger name, having starred in the sci-fi series "Doctor Who." She also said the pay gap would be closed with the forthcoming third season, promising that "going forward, no one gets paid more than the queen." In the next season, Foy and Smith are being replaced by older actors as the show moves forward in time. 

In March, Foy commented on the issue and told Entertainment Weekly that she felt "odd" about being at the center of it. 

"I'm surprised because I'm at the center of it, and anything that I'm at the center of like that is very very odd, and feels very very out of ordinary," she said. "But I'm not [surprised about the interest in the story] in the sense that it was a female-led drama. I'm not surprised that people saw [the story] and went, 'Oh, that's a bit odd.'

She added, "But I know that Matt feels the same that I do, that it's odd to find yourself at the center [of a story] that you didn't particularly ask for."

Leading by example to close the gender pay gap