Mum’s the word. Ruth Wilson appeared on CBS This Morning, granting her first interview since it was revealed that her character Alison Bailey had been killed in the August 5th episode of Showtime’s The Affair.
And while she said she’d asked to leave, she also noted she’s "not allowed to talk about why," prompting (of course), a flurry of speculation on the subject. When host Gayle King pressed her on whether her exit could be linked to her salary, she said: "I've never complained to Showtime about pay parity."
Interestingly, in February, she’d told Radio Times that her male cohort Dominic West "definitely gets more" money than her on the series. "Certainly when I signed up to that project, I would have got paid less," she said. "Then the producers might argue, 'Well, he's already done a major American TV show The Wire, so he's already got a level.' But even after a Golden Globe, I'm not going to be on parity. So he definitely gets more than me. I mean, I don't know what the figure is, but I'm sure he does."
Showrunner Sarah Treem told The Hollywood Reporter of her decision to leave: "That was a request, so that was decided basically before we started writing. It wasn't a discovery of any kind. That was very deliberate. And actually, we shot all of her work first. Her whole storyline was shot before we shot anything else."
Late in the day Thursday after much speculation, Showtime issued a statement, contradicting both of them and claiming the decision had been mutual. "We can’t speak for Ruth, but heading into season four everyone agreed the character’s story had run its course. Ultimately, it felt like the most powerful creative decision would be to end Alison’s arc at the moment when she had finally achieved self-empowerment," Showtime said. "The impact of her loss will be felt as the series concludes next season. We thank the many fans who embraced the character of Alison and especially thank Ruth for her indelible work over the past four seasons."