Fictional first lady Claire Underwood is one tough negotiator — and so is the woman who plays her. House of Cards actress Robin Wright revealed Tuesday that she recently demanded to be paid the same as costar Kevin Spacey for her work on the popular Netflix series, and ultimately prevailed.
According to a Huffington Post report, Wright was participating in a Rockefeller Foundation event when she addressed the issue of unequal pay for men and women. Speaking about House of Cards, she said, “I was like, ‘I want to be paid the same as Kevin.’”
Like Spacey, who plays President Frank Underwood, Wright has appeared in all 52 episodes of House of Cards. She has also directed several episodes and joined Spacey as an executive producer on the most recent season.
Wright also praised the show for featuring such a prominent female character. “There are very few films or TV shows where the male, the patriarch, and the matriarch are equal,” she said. “And they are inHouse of Cards.”
She added that “Claire Underwood’s character was more popular than [Frank’s] for a period of time. So I capitalized on it. I was like, ‘You better pay me or I’m going to go public’ And they did.”
Representatives for Netflix and Wright did not immediately respond to requests for comment about her remarks.
She is the latest high-profile actor to speak out about the problematic gender pay gap in Hollywood (and beyond), joining Patricia Arquette, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, and others. In October, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission launched an investigation into gender discrimination in the industry.
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