mind the pay gap

Jessica Chastain Refuses to Be Paid in Just Gratitude

Jessica Chastain
Jessica Chastain Photo: Jason Merritt/Getty Images

This year has seen a lot of A-list stars, from Patricia Arquette to Jennifer Lawrence, standing up to talk about the pay disparity between male and female actors, and Zero Dark Thirty star Jessica Chastain is joining the loudly pro-equal-pay crowd. In a profile in the Guardian, Chastain went on at length about the importance of women standing up and demanding the salaries they feel deserve. After struggling for ages, Chastain explained, the relief of landing a part shouldn’t take the place of wages. “[Former Sony exec] Amy Pascal said actresses need to stop being grateful. So I’m testing that out! I think people know, if they’re going to hire me I’m not going to just be grateful,” Chastain told the Guardian. “There have been situations where I have lost movies because I’ve said, this is not a fair deal, and I’ve walked away.”

Chastain, known fan of other women and particularly actresses she admires, also highlighted the problem of pitting successful women against each other, name-checking fellow wage-gap warrior Jennifer Lawrence. “I remember reading this article that talked about the ‘fight’ between me and [her] , how we were rivals because we were up for the same Oscar [in 2013]. They never say that when men are nominated in a category,” she pointed out. “Why would it benefit anyone to deny accolades for others? It’s this long fairy tale that women don’t get along. But we’re changing that.”

Jessica Chastain Refuses to Be Paid in Gratitude