Matt Smith thinks Claire Foy is ''f***ing brilliant''.

The 36-year-old actor starred as Prince Philip alongside Claire's Queen Elizabeth in the Netflix drama 'The Crown', and was thrown into controversy when it was revealed he was paid significantly more than the actress despite having less screen time.

But the actor - who producers claimed at the time was paid more because of his high profile role as the titular Time Lord in 'Doctor Who' - says he ''fully supports Claire'', and has heaped praise on the brunette beauty.

He said: ''We were suddenly thrust into this discussion that none of us knew anything about. But we had a sense of unity, and I fully support Claire. Claire is interested in good things and good people. She is f***ing brilliant; she is compelling, beguiling, interesting, irreverent. If she could hear me now she would be sticking two fingers up at me. The only challenge is trying to get her out.''

And Claire, 34, says she found it difficult to be asked to give an opinion on the pay gap when she didn't ''really know enough about'' the situation, because she wanted to make sure what she said was ''beneficial''.

Speaking to WSJ magazine, she said: ''I was being paid less than Matt [Smith]. It was a short, sharp initiation into people wanting you to have an opinion about something you're involved in. You want to make sure you are saying something beneficial for a huge number of people, something that is not reductive and that you believe in, but you don't really know enough about.''

The actress previously admitted she was ''deeply hurt'' by the pay gap scandal, 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.''