How wonderful!

Charlize Theron has spoken about the true meaning of feminism and the importance of equal pay in a new interview with Elle UK.

The actress, who stars in this month’s action reboot Mad Max: Fury Road, managed to negotiate an equal salary for The Huntsman after leaked Sony emails showed the disparity between pay on the set of American Hustle. She engineered a $10m rise to put her on par with co-star Chris Hemsworth for the Snow White prequel.

So I am to get a $10 million raise for writing at Forbes am I? That’s what equal pay means after all.

14 comments on “How wonderful!

  1. Perhaps the studio thought Chris Hemsworth’s name on the billing was more likely to attract cinema-goers than Charlize Theron’s, and thus he was worth paying more. Intuitively this seems incorrect; but I’d have to see their market research to be certain.

  2. The main reason for unequal pay is how many young women go into acting, and what’s required of them. To get a good acting job as a man, you have to either be very good at acting or have a certain presence. A lot of women get acting jobs simply because they’re pretty. Men don’t get away with just being attractive. There’s a harder filter on leading men, which means there are less of them.

    If you look at a film like Four Weddings and a Funeral, who is doing all the heavy lifting? Hugh Grant or Andie MacDowell?

    And yes, OK, there are films where women do the work. Julia and Julia is Amy Adams and Meryll Streep doing the work, but those films are rare (mostly because women prefer TV to movies).

  3. Charlie Theron is kidding herself if she thinks here pay packet is anything other than pure economics. She and Kristen Stewart were the names I recognised before.I saw the original and they pulled us into the cinema.

    As with women’s tennis, there are one or two big box office names and the rest are interchangeable eye – candy.

  4. “A lot of women get acting jobs simply because they’re pretty.” No doubt. But we used to watch Poirot on the telly, and I was endlessly impressed by the number of young women who could put in a darn good performance, and yet I’d never see them again. True, we watch so little telly that maybe I should have expected never to see them again, but still. Based on that I’d guess there’s a substantial oversupply of competent female actors. I didn’t get the same impression of the male actors. That discrepancy is consistent with actresses being paid less than actors.

  5. dearieme,

    “Based on that I’d guess there’s a substantial oversupply of competent female actors. I didn’t get the same impression of the male actors.”

    According to the Standard (http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/theatre/gender-bias-on-stage–shared-experience-theatre-company-6368186.html) 75% of applicants to drama schools are women. Add in models that get acting jobs (and yes, generally not very demanding jobs, but they are jobs that trained actresses would have once got) and yeah, you’re going to see a lot more different actresses.

  6. dearieme – “But we used to watch Poirot on the telly, and I was endlessly impressed by the number of young women who could put in a darn good performance, and yet I’d never see them again.”

    Men’s interest in women peaks in the mid-20s and is in sharp decline by the time they are 30. Sure there are some women who manage to have careers beyond that point, but if your main qualification is that you are a honey, you need to make hay while the sun shines. Which means you get on TV once or twice and then marry a banker.

    Men and women cannot have equal pay because there is no sense in which they are equal except, if you believe in that sort of thing, in the eyes of God.

  7. “Men and women … no sense in which they are equal except, if you believe in that sort of thing, in the eyes of God”. I don’t believe in God, but I still find “equal in the eyes of God” a useful way to phrase it. But then I find “Christian name” a useful expression too, though I am unperturbed by its demise.

  8. “$10 million rise” is the headline.

    The reality is $8,000 a year, by the time pay is “equal.”

  9. Dearieme, there is something of an ITV drama repertory company so you often see the same actors and actresses in Poirot, Morse, Lewis, Midsommer murders and so on.

    Of course they’re mostly repeats on ITV3 these days, but since that’s about all I watch, (and that rarely), I get to see them doing their stuff regularly.

  10. Hm. All I did was attempt to elevate the Economics level of comments on this blog by making an allusion to supply and demand. I’m not a drama critic.

  11. Maybe I could be one, though.

    The costumes were better in Poirot than in Morse.

    There you are.

  12. Good Lord, the evenings must fly by in the Sean Penn – Charlize Theron household.

  13. 1%er/multi-millionairess shacked up with multi-millionaire gets paid millions more for a job and The Guardian are whooping it up. Good luck to her getting a pay rise but I thought the Graun published articles on a regular basis about ‘obscene’ wealth and the ‘super-rich’

  14. This looks like equal pay for Charlize. Not equal pay for women. When she distributes her pay amongst all women she can tell me about equal pay.

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