Claire Foy was ''deeply hurt'' by 'The Crown' pay scandal.

The 34-year-old actress admits it was tough to hear she was being paid much less than her co-star Matt Smith but felt she had to speak out about it or she would be ''cheating herself and all the other women she knows''.

She said: ''I was deeply hurt by it, because I'd been working on that show for two years. I loved everybody on it. And then I realised, there's been a big, fat, dirty secret that nobody's ever talked about. But then there was also that thing [of being] an inadvertent spokesperson. Why did it have to be me? I could have said nothing. And I think everyone would have preferred that. But I thought, if I do that, I will be cheating myself and all the other women I know.''

And Claire feels the industry can get away with things like this because it is so competitive.

She added to NET-A-PORTER's weekly digital magazine PorterEdi: ''You feel lucky to have a job. It's so competitive. So, in that way, they rely on competitiveness and actors' vulnerability to say, 'They'll accept it for 10 grand less.'''

Matt had previously broken his silence on the issue to condemn the pay gap.

He said at the time: ''Claire is one of my best friends, and I believe that we should be paid equally and fairly and there should be equality for all. I support her completely, and I'm pleased that it was resolved and they made amends for it, because that what's 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.''