Chris Evans is the BBC's highest paid star

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And radio host Chris Evans, the broadcast network's chief earner, takes home more than $2.9 million - about 20 times the salary of the United Kingdom prime minister. Emily Maitlis, the newsreader, Sarah Montague, the presenter of the Today program on Radio 4, and Louise Minchin, who presents BBC Breakfast, do not earn more than £150,000 a year, according to the disclosure. The top seven earners in the list were all male. Fans of the show didn't lament his exit, as many found his shouty presentation style off-putting.

The BBC's annual salary report has been released revealing the corporation's highest paid television stars and, as expected, the findings have thrown forward some worrying statistics.

"We're in a market that is now even more competitive than ever".

Talk show host Graham Norton made within the 850,000 to 899,999 pound range, or $1.1 million to $1.17 million bracket.

The BBC has been faced with backlash too over the gap between men and women's pay, as only a third of its 96 top earners were female, and the lack of diversity as only 10 of the highest paid were from black and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds.

"It's an important thing that licence fee payers know where their money is going", he added, saying that the government concurred with the BBC director general's professed desire to address the gender gap in pay.

Others, such as Question Time host David Dimbleby, are paid by production companies - so are not classed as BBC employees.

Evans, meanwhile, has been with the BBC since he became a host on one of its radio shows in the early '90s and now presents BBC Radio 2 Breakfast Show.

The full list is pictured below, while a more detailed run-down of the BBC's 20 best-paid stars is available here. Chris Evans, the highest paid, earned £2.2 million and £2.25 million, while Claudia Winkleman, the highest-paid female celebrity, earned between £450,000 and £500,000.

Take That singer Gary Barlow, who fronted BBC Talent show Let It Shine, is also listed in the same band.

It is the first time that such information has been revealed to the public.

Hall said the BBC hopes to split all leading presenting and acting roles equally between men and women by 2020. The BBC have stressed that its overall talent bill has been reduced by more than £4m over the last financial year, to £194m.