The Story Behind Michelle Williams And Mark Wahlberg’s Insane Pay Gap Will Make Your Blood Boil
Photo: Splash News
Infuriating revelations about sexism and sexual misconduct in Hollywood have dominated headlines for more than four months since the New York Times and the New Yorker published their first damning reports about Harvey Weinstein. But this one is, even by today's jaded standards, completely insane. According to a report by USA Today, Mark Wahlberg was paid a whopping $1.5 million to reshoot scenes for the aptly-named film All the Money in the World, while costar Michelle Williams was paid just $1,000. Yeah, just take that in for a second. This works out to Williams being paid less than 1 percent of what Wahlberg earned. Welcome to the gender pay gap!
Ironically, reshoots for the Ridley Scott-directed drama took place following sexual assault allegations against cast member Kevin Spacey, whose scenes were swiftly reshot using actor Christopher Plummer. Scott initially claimed to USA Today that “everyone did it for nothing.”
“No, they all came in free. Christopher had to get paid. But Michelle, no. Me, no. I wouldn’t do that,” he said in December.
Williams, for her part, told the publication that when Scott called her to request a reshoot: “I said I'd be wherever they needed me, whenever they needed me. And they could have my salary, they could have my holiday, whatever they wanted. Because I appreciated so much that they were making this massive effort.”
But apparently, Wahlberg's team negotiated the $1.5 million salary at the last minute, which Williams was never told about. So basically, because Williams tried to do the right thing and essentially volunteer her time to ensure the film she was starring in wasn't associated with a sexual predator, she got screwed. What's even more upsetting? Versions of this are playing out for women across industries every day.
Neither actor, nor their shared agency William Morris Endeavor, has yet to comment, but fellow Hollywood insiders are understandably furious at the revelation, which comes just days after a Golden Globes ceremony that promoted gender equality through the Hollywood-based Time's Up initiative, to which Williams brought #MeToo founder Tarana Burke as a guest. Hopefully, as some on Twitter have already called for, Wahlberg, who reportedly raked in $68 million last year, will have the sense to donate his earnings to a non-profit.
UNACCEPTABLE. UNACCEPTABLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TO SAY THE LEAST. https://t.co/KS6hRmE4TA
— Busy Philipps (@BusyPhilipps) January 10, 2018
Please go see Michelle's performance in All The Money in The World. She's a brilliant Oscar nominated Golden Globe winning actress. She has been in the industry for 20 yrs. She deserves more than 1% of her male costar' s salary. https://t.co/HIniew6lf7
— Jessica Chastain (@jes_chastain) January 10, 2018
This is so messed up that it is almost hard to believe. Almost. This is how this business works. I wonder if the studio or Wahlberg will do something to make the situation less insane. https://t.co/RsunBlOeCk
— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) January 10, 2018
Michelle Williams was paid 1% of what her male co-star made on her latest film. This is totally unacceptable. https://t.co/xE5ZNqjcrA
— Amber Tamblyn (@ambertamblyn) January 10, 2018
Shameful indeed. And this is a movie about how greedy and heartless men can be! https://t.co/aRTi2tqWGG
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) January 10, 2018
Outrageously unfair- but it’s always been like this. I was never, ever paid even a quarter of what the male lead received: Wahlberg got $1.5M for 'All the Money' reshoot, Williams paid less than $1,000 https://t.co/LrOjrHVjcp
— Mia Farrow (@MiaFarrow) January 10, 2018