What do the 9 highest paid actors in Hollywood have in common?


Robert Downey Jnr: probably has a lot more money than you.

What do the 9 highest paid actors in Hollywood have in common?

Let’s list them, and take a look: Robert Downey Jr., Channing Tatum, Hugh Jackman, Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Adam Sandler, Tom Cruise, and Denzel Washington.

Are you noticing a pattern yet? Yep. Yep, that’s it. You’ve got it.

They’re all men. The 9 highest paid actors in Hollywood this year were all men.

Angelina Jolie just snuck into the top 10, on 33 million per year. Her overall salary was roughly the same amount as the two lowest ranked men on the list.

And if you’re about to suggest that maybe the male actors may just have been working a lot more than women, and actresses the world over decided that 2013 was the year of taking it easy and getting a little ‘me time’, then you’re well off the mark.

Because of the biggest paychecks earned by actors per film, not a single one was earned by women. Overall women are earning less, and on individual projects women are earning less.

Well, that sucks.

Despite the fact that films like the Hunger Games franchise are killing it – proving that, gasp, films with female leads can in fact fill seats in the cinema – women are still underrepresented in the film industry.

Underrepresented in the availability of quality roles, in salary, as actors and directors and scriptwriters and producers. Women are even underrepresented in behind-the-scenes roles.

Let’s support strong female characters in film, and female directors, producers and scriptwriters.

But the times they are a changing. The recent blockbuster and independent successes of projects like Bridesmaids, The Heat, and Girls shows that progress is being made –slowly but surely.

And if you want to be a part of progress, it’s pretty easy: go see a film this weekend. A film with a strong, female lead (hello, Hunger Games). A film directed by a woman (hello, Carrie). Or check out some of the links below (hello, internet).

Hopefully Hollywood will start to sit up and take notice.

The above graph was taken from the New York Film Academy’s infographic Gender Inequality in Film.

Want more? To support women’s representation in the media check out The Representation Project, and to support women’s representation in the film industry check out the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media.

Do you think there is gender inequality in film? What’s your favourite film with an active, autonomous, non-sexualised female lead?

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