Robin Wright took a page from the script of her show, “House of Cards,” when she demanded that Netflix pay her equally to costar Kevin Spacey — or she’d go public.
“I was like, ‘I want to be paid the same as Kevin,'” Wright, who plays Claire Underwood on the Netflix series, said during a human rights discussion at the Rockefeller Foundation in New York City on Tuesday, according to The Huffington Post.
“It was the perfect paradigm. There are very few films or TV shows where the male, the patriarch, and the matriarch are equal. And they are in ‘House of Cards,'” she continued.
Wright, who made the comments while discussing equal pay for women in general, has starred as the wife and partner-in-crime to Spacey’s Frank Underwood since 2013. She became an executive producer on the show’s fourth season and has also directed several episodes. On the most recent seasons, Wright’s character has transitioned from the wife of a politician to a politician seeking elected office for herself.
“I was looking at the statistics and Claire Underwood’s character was more popular than [Frank’s] for a period of time, so I capitalised on it. I was like, ‘You better pay me or I’m going to go public,'” Wright said. “And they did.”
Netflix told Business Insider that it has no comment on Wright’s statements.
The pay gap in Hollywood came to the forefront in 2014, when the Sony hacks revealed that Jennifer Lawrence and Amy Adams made less than their male costars for “American Hustle.” Lawrence waited nearly a year before addressing the wage gap in Lena Dunham’s newsletter, Lenny, saying that she was more angry with herself for not pushing harder for a higher salary.
Recently, actress and director Jodie Foster dismissed Hollywood’s pay gap controversy, saying “In terms of pay, it’s hard for me to get interested in millionaires worried about who gets paid more.” She suggested pay was a matter of what the marketplace demands and felt that the focus should be on the unequal pay for women in general.
This article has been updated with Netflix’s response after the original publication.
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