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Olivia Colman spoke candidly about the gender pay gap in Hollywood during an appearance on CNN’s The Amanpour Hour. She expressed frustration over the fact that male actors are still paid more, despite research suggesting that women have always been big box office draws. Colman, who won an Oscar for her role in The Favourite, highlighted the significant pay disparity she faces as a female actress compared to her male counterparts.

Taraji P. Henson also shared her experience with the pay disparity in Hollywood during an interview for the SAG-AFTRA Foundation. She revealed that she almost walked away from a role in The Color Purple due to unequal pay. Henson expressed concern about the lack of progress in closing the gender pay gap and the impact it has on future generations of Black actresses. She highlighted the disappointment of achieving success only to face the same struggles as other Black women in the industry.

The Color Purple was released in 2023, but Henson had not received a raise since her role in Proud Mary in 2018. She voiced her frustration with the industry’s tendency to overlook the achievements of Black women and treat their successes as anomalies. Henson’s struggle to secure equal pay reflects a larger issue faced by many actresses in Hollywood, particularly women of color, who continue to fight for pay parity.

Michelle Williams became a prominent figure in the discussion about the gender pay gap in Hollywood when it was revealed that she was paid significantly less than her male costar for reshoots of All the Money in the World. Mark Wahlberg, her costar, was paid $1.5 million compared to Williams’ less than $1,000. Wahlberg later donated his earnings to the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund in Williams’ name, bringing attention to the issue and sparking conversations about the wage disparity in the industry.

The struggles faced by Colman, Henson, and Williams are part of a broader pattern of inequality in Hollywood, where women, particularly women of color, continue to be underpaid and undervalued compared to their male counterparts. The efforts of these actresses to speak out about their experiences and advocate for change have shed light on the systemic issues that perpetuate the gender pay gap. By sharing their stories, they hope to inspire lasting change in the industry and ensure that future generations of actresses are treated fairly and equitably.

Despite their individual successes, Colman, Henson, and Williams have all faced challenges in securing equal pay and recognition for their work. Their stories highlight the ongoing fight for gender equality in Hollywood and the need for systemic change to address the pervasive pay disparity that continues to affect women in the industry. By speaking out and sharing their experiences, these actresses are actively working to create a more equitable and inclusive industry where all performers are valued and compensated fairly for their contributions.

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