Jessica Chastain opens up about helping Octavia Spencer negotiate salary five times her original pay

Press Trust of India

Jun 28, 2018 12:07:29 IST

New York: Jessica Chastain has opened up about helping Octavia Spencer negotiate a salary five times her original pay.

The 41-year-old actor, who starred with the Oscar winner in The Help, says she was "shocked" that a woman of colour of Spencer's calibre could be discriminated against in such a blatant manner.

Jessica Chastain opens up about helping Octavia Spencer negotiate salary five times her original pay

Octavia Spencer (left) with Jessica Chastain. Image from YouTube

"Of course, I knew that women of colour got paid less. Of course, I knew that. I just assumed, which is the dangerous thing, I assumed a woman like Octavia Spencer would be compensated fairly for the work she's done and for the awards she's received," Chastain told Today host Hoda Kotb.

Chastain, who has been a vocal supporter of gender pay equality, previously said she "cares more" about Spencer's salary than her own.

Once she found out about what Spencer was being offered on their upcoming Christmas comedy, the actor decided to tie their deals together to bring up her co-star's pay.

The actors, who will be seen together in the film to be directed by The Big Sick helmer Michael Showalter, were successful and Spencer was able to negotiate for an amount that was five times more than what she was being paid earlier.

Spencer first revealed how Chastain helped her make five times more back in January during a panel at the Sundance Film Festival.

"I told her about the gross disparity in our salaries. She provided a much-needed shoulder and listened. And then she did what she always does: she took up my cause and made it her own."

She praised Chastain, saying, "As a friend, she's your biggest cheerleader; but as a colleague, she's your most vocal advocate."

Updated Date: Jun 28, 2018 16:23:44 IST

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