Julie Delpy is opening up about her own experience with pay disparity.
While attending the Zurich Film Festival, the filmmaker and actress spoke about being paid reportedly less than costar Ethan Hawke on almost all of the films in the beloved Before trilogy.
“As a woman, you know you’re paid less than a man as a writer, as a director, as an actress,” Delpy, 49, said during an interview with Variety, claiming that she was only paid a fraction of what Hawke, 48, made for 1995’s Before Sunrise and the film’s 2004 sequel Before Sunset.
“On the before movies, the first film I think I was paid maybe a tenth of what Ethan was paid, the second movie I think I was paid half,” she said.
However, when it came time for the third film, Before Midnight which was released in 2013, Delpy says she demanded equal pay.
“The third movie I said, ‘Listen guys, if I’m not paid the same, I won’t do it.’ ”
Delpy is far from the only woman in Hollywood to speak out about being paid less than their male costars.
Michelle Williams, who has been open up about her own fight for equal pay while working on All the Money in the World, used her platform at the 2019 Emmy Awards to make a plea for equality, especially among women of color.
Thanking FX and Fox 21 Studios for “paying me equally” for her role in Fosse/Verdon, Williams explained that “when you put value into a person, it empowers that person to get in touch with their own inherent value.”
“So the next time a woman, and especially a woman of color, because she stands to make 52 cents on the dollar compared to her white male counterpart, tells you what she needs in order to do her job, listen to her, believe her,” she said.
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In the press room, Williams said learning she was making less money on All the Money in the World “woke me up.”
“I’d always known how difficult it was, I know from the inside how difficult it was to feel like you were ever really getting ahead, and it felt like no matter how many accolades I amassed, I still couldn’t make that translate into your retirement money or something that really felt like long term security,” she said. “There really won’t be any satisfaction for me until the larger message is heard, and and that’s what I really wanted to point out tonight.”
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Just last month, Maggie Gyllenhaal also opened up about how she felt she had been “brainwashed” to accept the idea of the pay gap.
Speaking about her reaction when she learned she would be paid the same as her The Deuce costar James Franco on the HBO series, she revealed she “felt kind of guilty” at first.
“I just, out of the blue, got a phone call saying that HBO was going to significantly raise my salary,” Gyllenhaal, 41, said to Sirius XM Insight host John Fugelsang. “And, I’m going to be totally honest here, the first feeling I had was I felt kind of guilty. I just had this windfall: ‘You know, wait, that’s not fair.’ But that’s where I’m brainwashed.”
“It took me a while to kind of clear my head,” added Gyllenhaal. “Because I think I spent a lot of time justifying this confused logic.”