Emma Stone says male costars have taken pay cuts so she could get equal pay

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Emma Stone.
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Frederick M. Brown/Getty

Emma Stone has opened up about the challenges she’s gone through to be paid the same wage as her male costars in movies.

In a revealing interview for Out Magazine – with her costar in her upcoming movie “Battle of the Sexes,Andrea Riseborough, and the tennis icon Stone is playing in the movie, Billie Jean King – the Oscar winner opened up about how some of her male costars have helped her in regards to the pay gap.

“In my career so far, I’ve needed my male costars to take a pay cut so that I may have parity with them,” Stone said. “And that’s something they do for me because they feel it’s what’s right and fair. That’s something that’s also not discussed, necessarily – that our getting equal pay is going to require people to selflessly say, ‘That’s what’s fair.'”

In Hollywood, successful actors have a quote, which is the amount of money they often will want to be paid per movie, based on the level of past movies they’ve work on, the size of those roles they’ve taken, and the box office those movies have made.

Stone admits her quote hasn’t been on par with the male actors she’s worked across in her career. But, that can change if the male star doesn’t ask for their quote.

Battle of the Sexes Fox Searchlight

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“Battle of the Sexes.”
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Fox Searchlight

“If my male costar, who has a higher quote than me but believes we are equal, takes a pay cut so that I can match him, that changes my quote in the future and changes my life,” Stone said.

Women have been paid less than men in Hollywood since the moving picture was invented, but it became a public conversation in 2015 after Jennifer Lawrence wrote an open letter about her personal frustration, after learning she was paid less than her male costars for the 2013 movie, “American Hustle.”

Since then, actresses have become more vocal in the need for equal pay. Last November, Jessica Chastain told Business Insider women in all businesses need to be more aggressive when it comes to their pay, and that people need to welcome it.

“We need to reevaluate women who ask for a pay raise or ask for a promotion. It’s actually an okay thing,” Chastain said. “It’s okay to be ambitious, it’s okay to be over-prepared.”

Stone, who plays King in the movie during her famous tennis match against Bobby Riggs, said in the Out interview that “at our best right now we’re making 80 cents to the dollar,” comparing actresses’ pay to male stars.