Emma Stone Says Her Male Co-Stars Took Pay Cuts For Her

Photo: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic.
It's not a secret that women make less than men for doing movies. Dozens of female actresses have come forward with their stories throughout the years, detailing the large pay gaps between them and their male co-stars. Most recently, the internet exploded upon learning that Gal Gadot in Wonder Woman made less than Henry Cavill initially did for playing Superman. Of course, studio execs and insiders quickly came forward to spell out exactly why the female actress starring the biggest summer movie would have been promised less than a man for a spectacularly similar role. There's always an explanation for a pay gap, but never a solution. (The solution is pretty simple: pay them the same.)
Advertisement
But if you're Emma Stone, you've lucked out a bit in the wage roulette. The lucrative actress has acted alongside a slew of talented men, and apparently they've taken a pay cut on her behalf ensuring that they all make the same wage on a project. In an interview with Out discussing her upcoming role in Battle of the Sexes as the real-life athletic superwoman Billie Jean King, Stone and her co-star Andrea Riseborough candidly discuss the topic of gendered wage discrepancies with King herself.
"In my career so far, I’ve needed my male co-stars to take a pay cut so that I may have parity with them," Stone admitted. "And that’s something they do for me because they feel it’s what’s right and fair. That’s something that’s also not discussed, necessarily—that our getting equal pay is going to require people to selflessly say, 'That’s what’s fair.' If my male co-star, who has a higher quote than me but believes we are equal, takes a pay cut so that I can match him, that changes my quote in the future and changes my life."
Stone added: "It’s not about, 'Women are this and men are that.' It is, 'We are all the same, we are all equal, we all deserve the same respect and the same rights.' And that’s really what I’ve been so grateful for with male co-stars — when I’ve been in a similar-size role in films, and it’s been multiple people who have been really incredible and said, 'That’s what I want to do. That’s what’s fair and what’s right.'"
Advertisement
Taking a look back at her career, it's fair to assume that the likes of Ryan Gosling, Andrew Garfield, and Steve Carrell (her co-star and nemesis in Battle of the Sexes), are the ones who felt the need to make things right when it came to compensation. So, kudos to them, I guess.
But that still is far from fair, and does not happen often, as Riseborough says that she has never experienced that sort of male-female balance. "I don’t know how many films I’ve been in—20, 25 films, something like that," she said. "And I’ve never had the experience of a guy taking any sort of pay cut."
In summary: Stone is pretty lucky. The rest of the women of Hollywood are still in a very real battle of the sexes of their own.
Advertisement