natalie portman, oscar-winning actress and harvard graduate, can’t escape the wage gap either

The actress has spoken out about being paid a third of what male co-stars earn.

by Wendy Syfret
12 January 2017, 1:00pm

Despite being one of the most acclaimed (and over qualified) actresses working today, Natalie Portman isn't safe from the wage gap either. In a recent interview with Marie Claire, she revealed that her salary on 2011's No Strings Attached was a third of her co-star Ashton Kutcher's. Despite having equal screen time, holding top billing, and being the first film released after Black Swan - which won her that Oscar - the pay disconnect was open knowledge on set. Like many women in the workplace, the disparity was the result of men demanding more money. She explains, "there's this thing with 'quotes' in Hollywood. His was three times higher than mine, so they said he should get three times more."

Recently several actresses including Jennifer Lawrence, Rooney Mara, Carey Mulligan, and Amanda Seyfried have been vocal about issues with gender and pay in their industry. While their cause has got a lot of attention, it's also struggled to connect. After all, we're still talking about millions of dollars.

But Natalie points out that the scale of the gap exceeds other industries. "Compared to men, in most professions, women make 80 cents to the dollar. In Hollywood, we are making 30 cents to the dollar," she explained. In 2013, Forbes reported that even in the top echelons of Hollywood, women are often paid 40 percent percent less than their male costars. The magazine noted in that year, top actors took home almost two and a half times more than the top actresses - that comes to a massive $465 million.

Reflecting on a solution, Portman continues, "I don't think women and men are more or less capable... We just have a clear issue with women not having opportunities." 


Text Wendy Syfret
Image via Flickr

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