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Gender pay gap

Jennifer Lawrence angry at herself for being a “bad negotiator”

By WITW Staff on October 13, 2015

Actress Jennifer Lawrence has penned an essay for the Lenny newsletter, created by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner. In the piece, “Why do I make less than my male co-stars?” the Mockingjay actor ruminates on the fallout from a 2014 email hack at Sony Pictures, that revealed how much less she was paid than her male American Hustle co-stars. “I didn’t get mad at Sony,” she writes. “I got mad at myself. I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early.”

“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’.”

Lawrence goes on to reflect on how differently she feels she is received when offering a firm opinion in the workplace, than when a man does. “All I hear and see all day are men speaking their opinions, and I give mine in the same exact manner, and you would have thought I had said something offensive,” she writes.

Lawrence draws a parallel between the way she is made to feel in Hollywood and material from another leaked Sony email, that referred to Angelina Jolie as a “spoiled brat” in a negotiation. “For some reason, I just can’t picture someone saying that about a man,” Lawrence observes.

Read the full essay at Lenny.

Related: 

Amy Pascal discusses what she learned from the Sony hack

Australian film-funding agency considers radical gender quota

Streep’s equal-rights appeal to Congress gets only five responses