Forbes named Jennifer Lawrence the highest-paid actress in the world and claimed that she has made $52 million this year, but she still makes less than the dude movie stars who are at the same level as her. In Lena Dunham’s newsletter Lenny, JLaw writes that she didn’t really open her eyes about the gender wage gap until the Sony hack. The Sony hack showed that both Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence made less than Bradley Cooper, Christian Bale and Jeremy Renner for American Hustle. Amy and JLaw got 7% of the back end and the dudes got 9%. Amy Pascal, Sony’s former co-chair, responded to Amy and JLaw making less by saying that if someone wants to work for less money, she’s going to let them work for less money, because it’s business. Amy said that if women want to make more, they have to demand more. Jennifer Lawrence is taking her advice.
JLaw says that she knows her rich people problems aren’t exactly relatable since she’s so rich she pisses money (Tip: If you ever see Jennifer Lawrence leaving a public bathroom, go in there, because the sinks are probably full of hundred dollar bills), but the Sony hack made her realize that she’s scared of going hard during negotiations.
It’s hard for me to speak about my experience as a working woman because I can safely say my problems aren’t exactly relatable. When the Sony hack happened and I found out how much less I was being paid than the lucky people with dicks, I didn’t get mad at Sony. I got mad at myself. I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early. I didn’t want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need. (I told you it wasn’t relatable, don’t hate me).
She goes on to say that she was okay with her negotiation skills until the Internet showed her that the men who are mega rich like her don’t worry about hurting feeling to get even more money.
But if I’m honest with myself, I would be lying if I didn’t say there was an element of wanting to be liked that influenced my decision to close the deal without a real fight. I didn’t want to seem “difficult” or “spoiled.” At the time, that seemed like a fine idea, until I saw the payroll on the Internet and realized every man I was working with definitely didn’t worry about being “difficult” or “spoiled.” This could be a young-person thing. It could be a personality thing. I’m sure it’s both. But this is an element of my personality that I’ve been working against for years, and based on the statistics, I don’t think I’m the only woman with this issue. Are we socially conditioned to behave this way?
She ends her essay by saying that she’s done with being cutesy and is over worrying about being labeled as a difficult bitch.
I’m over trying to find the “adorable” way to state my opinion and still be likable! Fuck that. I don’t think I’ve ever worked for a man in charge who spent time contemplating what angle he should use to have his voice heard. It’s just heard. Jeremy Renner, Christian Bale, and Bradley Cooper all fought and succeeded in negotiating powerful deals for themselves. If anything, I’m sure they were commended for being fierce and tactical, while I was busy worrying about coming across as a brat and not getting my fair share. Again, this might have NOTHING to do with my vagina, but I wasn’t completely wrong when another leaked Sony email revealed a producer referring to a fellow lead actress in a negotiation as a “spoiled brat.” For some reason, I just can’t picture someone saying that about a man.
You can read Jennifer Lawrence’s entire piece here and no, she doesn’t make any fart jokes. I know! Who is this Jennifer Lawrence?
She’s right about dropping the niceness during contraction negotiations. Alexis Carrington has taught us everything we need to know as a people, but she has really taught us how to conduct a serious contract negotiation. You know you did a contract negotiation right when at the end of it the other side is crying, shaking and begging for mercy as they hand over their first born. But you don’t have to be a total monster. You can be nice by giving them their first born back, for a bigger cut, of course.