Actresses being paid less than the male actors is not a new issue. Recently Octavia Spencer broke sown while sharing that how her friend Jessica Chastain landed up in a fight to receive better pay for the upcoming film they are doing together. In her story at a 2018 Sundance Film Festival board, which starts around 19 minutes and 30 seconds into this video, Spencer clarified that around March 2017, numerous months prior to the #TimesUp development had begun, Chastain went to her with a parody venture they’d beforehand talked about and needed to vent about pay value.
“She was like, ‘It’s time that women get paid the same as men!'” Spencer quoted Chastain as saying. “And I’m like, ‘Yeah, Jessica! It’s time!’ And we were dropping f-bombs and getting it all out there.”
“And then I said, ‘But here’s the thing: women of color on that [pay] spectrum, we make far less than white women, so if we’re gonna have that conversation about pay equity we’ve got to bring the women of color to the table.”
“And I told her my story and we talked numbers and she was quiet, and she had no idea that that’s what it was like for women of color,” Spencer said at the panel Saturday.
That is the point at which the Oscar-winning on-screen character quickly broke into tears as she related what Chastain did next.”These are upbeat tears,” she said.
“She said, ‘Octavia, we’re gonna get you paid for this film … You and I are gonna be tied together, we’re gonna be Favored Nations, and we’re gonna make the same thing and you’re gonna make that amount,’ and fast forward to last week, we’re making five times what we asked for,” Spencer said.
The actresses shared their emotions on Twitter.
@akstanwyck this is correct except I should clarify that I am making 5x my salary bc Jessica stood with me. I don’t know what or if it cost her anything as far as her rate, I just know she stood with me, and am eternally grateful. https://t.co/JH8QRUIVJc
— octavia spencer (@octaviaspencer) January 24, 2018
“Jessica Chastain believes,” Spencer continued. “She is walking the walk. And now I want to go to what the men are making, but right now it feels really good just to be in that conversation.”
She had been underpaid for so long. When I discovered that , I realized that I could tie her deal to mine to bring up her quote. Men should start doing this with their female costars.
— Jessica Chastain (@jes_chastain) January 24, 2018
Actions are so much more powerful than words, and you have demonstrated again and again that you intend to not just speak about change, but make that change. Thank you.
— Mighty Scribe (@themightyscribe) January 24, 2018
This is how you ally. Right here. You make sure the people around you benefit from your privilege. https://t.co/UQQSQF01Jw
— Mikki Kendall (@Karnythia) January 25, 2018
Such support from your best friend is a true blessing!