It is a widely known fact that women actors in Hollywood have been paid less remuneration for the equal amount of hard work they put in making a film. Time and again many Hollywood celebrities have voiced their opinions and displeasures about the existing and widening gap between the paychecks of male and female actors. Natalie Portman, Jennifer Lawrence, Viola Davis, Patricia Arquette, Kathy Griffin, and Meryl Streep are among the few names that have come forward and talked about the disparity openly. However, their opinions weren’t met with an out an out positive response. Some called it a “vulgar thing” to discuss while some termed it as “greed for more”. But there was a section of people who applauded their guts and supported their claim for getting equal remuneration.
A journal entitled “Age, Gender, and Compensation: A Study of Hollywood Movie Stars” published some facts about the gender disparity. It stated that the female actors get a hike in their pays till they are 34, after which it starts to decline rapidly whereas when it comes male actors there is no particular age limit after which their pay scale starts to decline. However, 51 is the peak earning age for leading male actors.
Looking at list generated by Forbes for highest paying actors of 2016, you will see only 3 female actors in the list of top 10 while remaining all the slots being taken by male actors. There is no female actor in top 6 highest paying actors while the 7th spot is taken by Jennifer Lawrence. The different between the highest paid male actor (Kevin Hart: $87.5m) and female actor (Jennifer Lawrence: $46m) is $41.5m and this difference says a lot about the gender discrimination when it comes to wages of actors.
Going further with this issue, the genre of the movie also has a big hand in deciding the remuneration of the leading actors. Considering the example of action movies, it is a common notion that they revolve around mostly male actors while their counterparts having not much to do in them. However, several action movies that were centered on female actors have been released but there hasn’t been enough raise seen in the amount on their paychecks.
Female actors like Meryl Streep, Scarlett Johansson, and Jennifer Lawrence have time and again proved their acting skills in various blockbuster movies and the number of honors and awards they have received is the testimony to this. However, their acting talent hasn’t been appreciated much when it comes to the numbers listed in the amount column on their paychecks.
Times are changing and women are fighting hard to get their place in almost every field of life. The pay disparity is not only prevalent among female actors; the situation is more grieving for the ones working behind the cameras in making a film. The issue needs urgent attention and a proper solution.