The Mark Wahlberg pay saga just found its happy ending
Can anyone else see the irony in all the pay controversy surrounding All the Money in the World? How funny that a movie about ransom money and one of the richest families in America has wound up hitting headlines for the very same thing: money. In new developments overnight, it seems there's a satisfying conclusion to the saga of this film's production (halted after Kevin Spacey's sexual abuse accusations hit and director Ridley Scott opted to cut him from the film and replace him with Chrisopher Plummer). Last week, one of the stars of the movie Mark Wahlberg drew criticism last week after it was revealed that his reshoot fee of US$1.5m had well and truly trumped co-star Michelle Williams' reshoot fee of just $1,000 per day. After getting slammed in the press (it's a tough time to be a male in Hollywood RN), Wahlberg finally put his money where it matters: to the Time's Up movement.
Donating his entire AUD $1.9m fee to Time's Up Legal Defense Fund, an organisation which supports female victims of sexual misconduct, the move is both a win for the #MeToo movement... and, well, a savvy PR move on Wahlberg's part. On Saturday, he released a statement saying, "Over the last few days my reshoot fee for All the Money in the World has become an important topic of conversation. I 100 percent support the fight for fair pay and I'm donating the $1.5 million to the Time's Up Legal Defense Fund in Michelle Williams' name."
This sweet gesture to Michelle prompted the actress the release this statement overnight to The Hollywood Reporter:
Today isn't about me. My fellow actresses stood by me and stood up for me, my activist friends taught me to use my voice, and the most powerful men in charge, they listened and they acted. If we truly envision an equal world, it takes equal effort and sacrifice. Today is one of the most indelible days of my life because of Mark Wahlberg, WME and a community of women and men who share in this accomplishment. [Kevin Spacey accuser] Anthony Rapp, for all the shoulders you stood on, now we stand on yours.
Wahlberg and Williams' agency WME also donated $500,000 to Time's Up, bringing the total donation to US$2m. No doubt the entire controversy is a forceful reminder that in post-Harvey Weinstein Hollywood, gender pay disparities are defiantly on the table. As well they should be.
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