According to a new piece by The Hollywood Reporter, the franchise star Tara Reid made but a quarter of her co-star Ian Ziering's salary for the movie Sharknado 5. Ziering reportedly now makes $500,000 per film, which would put Reid's salary at about $125,000.
"I think Sharknado cares more about their 'extra of the day' than they do about their own cast," Reid told THR. Reportedly, when the 41-year-old actress asked for a raise for Sharknado 3, the request was denied. (THR connects these negotiations to a Twitter campaign called "#Aprillive or #Aprildie." Fans voted to keep April, Reid's character, around. However, the campaign was not related to Reid's request for a raise.)
The lack of salary parity, unfortunately, seems to be a trend. House of Cards star and Hollywood veteran Robin Wright was told she'd have a pay equal to that of her co-star Kevin Spacey's.
Similarly, Shameless star Emmy Rossum entered into a standoff with the network over salary parity with her co-star William H. Macy in December of 2016. After a week or so of negotiations, the network seemed to have met her demands — Rossum announced that she would return to the show this year.
Reid's role in Sharknado likely began as stunt casting — as per THR, she was considered a "big get" for the project.
"Tara had a profile," casting director Gerald Webb told the publication. "SyFy liked her."
The franchise quickly evolved into a halfway house for D-list actors looking to climb up the ladder via self-aware cameos. (The crux of The Hollywood Reporter's piece is how the franchise wooed President Donald Trump for Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!) Reid has remained as the lead, a woman named April, but the studio seems to be more interested cameo "gets" than keeping their main actress around. Refinery29 reached out to Reid's representation for clarification on the salary parity issue. They did not immediately respond.
This article has been updated.
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