“It’s extremely uncomfortable to inquire about equal pay …”
Jennifer Lawrence’s name may be the first one that pops up in the opening credits of her new Netflix film, “Don’t Look Up” — but that doesn’t mean she was paid the most to appear in the movie.
The cast for Adam McKay’s upcoming release is stacked, with Leonardo DiCaprio, Meryl Streep, Jonah Hill, Timothee Chalamet and Cate Blanchett, but it’s Lawrence who gets top billing — with her name appearing solo, before being joined by Leo’s.
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“I was number one on the call sheet, so …” said J-Law in a new Vanity Fair cover story, before the publication wondered whether she was “okay” with that. “With being number one on the call sheet? Yeah. And I thought [the credits] should reflect that,” she said, adding that DiCaprio was “very gracious about it.”
“I think we had something called a Laverne & Shirley, which is this billing they invented where it’s an equal billing. But I guess maybe somewhere down the line, I kicked the stone further, like, ‘What if it wasn’t equal?’” she continued.
Lachlan Bailey/Vanity Fair
One thing that wasn’t equal, however, was how much the two superstars were paid to appear in the project. According to reports, Lawrence took in $25 million for the film, while DiCaprio earned $30 million … seemingly for less work. The two are both one-time Oscar-winning actors, though 47-year-old DiCaprio’s career has spanned quite a bit longer — and more profitable — than 31-year-old Lawrence’s, something she seemed to acknowledge.
“Yeah, I saw that too,” she said when VF pointed out the pay disparity. “Look, Leo brings in more box office than I do. I’m extremely fortunate and happy with my deal.”
“But in other situations, what I have seen — and I’m sure other women in the workforce have seen as well — is that it’s extremely uncomfortable to inquire about equal pay,” she added. “And if you do question something that appears unequal, you’re told it’s not gender disparity but they can’t tell you what exactly it is.”
“Don’t Look Up” hits Netflix on December 24th, 2021. Lawrence’s Vanity Fair hits newsstands November 30.