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Octavia Spencer Jessica Chastain Are Sticking Together

At a Sundance Film Festival panel titled Women Breaking Barriers, Octavia Spencer shared a touching story about how important it is to bring solidarity when negotiating deals.

Spencer and Jessica Chastain are developing a comedy together, that the two are set to co-star in. During a conversation the friends had about pay equity, Spencer outlined the many additional challenges women of color face when it comes to equal compensation for equal work. Spencer laid out for Chastain, “Here’s the thing, women of color on that spectrum, we make far less than white women. So, if we’re gonna have that conversation about pay equity, we gotta bring the women of color to the table.”

After admitting her naïveté on the subject, Jessica did her part and went to producers about getting her co-star a bigger payday by demanding it as a bundle with her own salary.

Octavia further explained her love for Chastain saying, “I love that woman, because she’s walking the walk and she’s actually talking the talk. She said, ‘Octavia we’re gonna get you paid on this film. You and I are gonna be tied together. We’re gonna be favored nations, and we’re gonna make the same thing.’ Fast forward to last week, we’re making five times what we asked for.”

Jada Pinkett Smith told the same story at another panel as well, inspiring everyone in the crowd to actually stick together rather than just talk about it or march for a cause.

Hopefully this is something we’ll see a lot more of in Hollywood and other workplaces as time goes on.

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