In the latest issue of British GQ, Amy Adams spoke about her experience working for David O. Russell and her awareness of the disparity in how much she and Jennifer Lawrence and their male costars were being paid. Salaries on films are usually decided through negotiation, but, as the Sony email hack and ensuing revelations from more and more women throughout the entertainment business has shown, men, by and large, still command higher salaries than their female costars.
In the article, Adams admits, “The truth is we hire people to negotiate on our behalf, men and women ... I knew I was being paid less and I still agreed to do it because the option comes down to do it or don’t do it. So you just have to decide if it’s worth it for you. It doesn’t mean I liked it.”
Jennifer Lawrence, her co-star in Russell’s American Hustle in 2013, had written a piece for The Lenny Letter last October in which she admits her personal conflict between not wanting “to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need,” alluding to her success with the X-Men and Hunger Games films, and “fail(ing) as a negotiator because I gave up early.” Lawrence admits her acquiescence was, in part, because she “didn’t want to seem ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled,’” though similar efforts of her male counterparts could have been regarded as “fierce and tactical.”
Both actresses admit the way women are perceived when offering their opinion or acting assertively in business settings as different than men. “All I hear and see all day are men speaking their opinions,” Lawrence said, “and I give mine in the same exact manner, and you would have thought I had said something offensive.” In response to the Lenny article, Adams agrees that “we [women] have been conditioned to not be controversial, to not cause problems.”