Divergent Star Got Paid Five Times Less That Her Co-Stars In a Show With 8 Emmys
Unequal pay doesn't just exist between male and female actors.
Big Little Lies was a big deal back in 2017. Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon on the same screen in the series – this news in itself became a sensation.
But HBO did not limit itself to a spectacular cast: the script, the cinematography, the soundtrack – everything was at the highest level.
In addition to Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon, Zoe Kravitz, Laura Dern and Shailene Woodley starred in the first season of the series.
It turns out that Nicole and Reese were paid a hefty $1 million per episode, while Shailene is known to have earned a total of $1.3 million for the first season, which works out to about $242,000 per episode.
Undoubtedly, Woodley does not have the acting experience and popularity of Kidman or Witherspoon, and a small difference in pay would be justified.
But an almost fivefold difference raises questions, especially taking into account that all of the main characters shared screen time roughly equally.
Hollywood stars have been trying for years to draw attention to unequal pay for equal work. However, this mainly concerns the difference in pay between actors and actresses.
A few years ago, a scandal was caused by the disclosure of the salaries of the American Hustle actors. Christian Bale and Bradley Cooper each received $2.5 million and nine percent of the box office after spending 45 days on the set.
Actress Amy Adams spent the same amount of time but received $1.25 million and seven percent of the gross.
In Big Little Lies Shailene Woodley played Jane Chapman, a single mother who fled to Monterey from her darkest secret. Jane has post-traumatic stress disorder.
Six years ago, she met a handsome architect in a bar, but as soon as the door to a luxurious room closed behind them, he turned into a sadist, sociopath and psycho.
He abused Jane, and she could do nothing about it because was afraid he would kill her. And later she learned of her pregnancy.
Six years after that Jane lives with her son Ziggy, who looks like his father, and does her best to hide the secret of his birth – not only from him, but from others as well.
Woodley received critical and audience acclaim for her performance and was nominated for an Emmy and a Golden Globe.