Kate Winslet just entered the Hollywood pay gap debate

The past year, sexism in Hollywood has come to the forefront of the conversation — particularly in terms of the pay gap. Last month, world-famous actress Jennifer Lawrence penned an eye-opening essay in Lena Dunham’s Lenny, expressing her soul-searching journey that she underwent after the leaked Sony emails in December revealed just how much less she was making than her male co-stars. “. . .if I’m honest with myself, I would be lying if I didn’t say there was an element of wanting to be liked that influenced my decision to close the deal without a real fight,” she wrote. “I didn’t want to seem ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled’. . . [I] realized every man I was working with definitely didn’t worry about being ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled.’”

Now, in an interview with BBC Newsbeat, another star has weighed in on sexism in Hollywood — Kate Winslet. But Kate’s view isn’t exactly the same as what we’ve been hearing as of late: She doesn’t think talking about the pay gap in the film industry is a “nice conversation.”

“I’m having such a problem with these conversations,” Kate told BBC Newsbeat. “I understand why they are coming up but maybe it’s a British thing. I don’t like talking about money; it’s a bit vulgar, isn’t it?”

Kate is doesn’t think there’s a point to talking about how much women earn compared to men in Hollywood, she explained. “I don’t think that’s a very nice conversation to have publically at all,” Kate continued. “I’m quite surprised by these conversations to be honest, simply because it seems quite a strange thing to be discussing out in the open like that. I am a very lucky woman and I’m quite happy with how things are ticking along.”

When it comes to those in the industry who have spoken up about the issue, Kate is in the vast minority. Earlier this year, the Academy Award-winning Charlize Theron demanded a $10 million increase on her paycheck for The Huntsman to match her pay to her co-star, Chris Hemsworth. Amanda Seyfried spoke up this summer about the fact that she made 10% of what her male co-star made on a film she worked on a few years ago, despite the fact that the two were “pretty even in status.” Even male stars have put in their two cents, such as Bradley Cooper, who has promised to share his salary information with female co-stars in the future so they can negotiate a fair amount. I don’t know where it’s changing otherwise,” he told Reuters“But that’s something that I could do.”

Kate told BBC that it’s “dangerous” to comment on others’ views on the pay gap, but “visibly squirm[ed]” when asked if she’s ever had to face sexism in the industry. “Honestly, no,” she responded. “And if I’d ever been in that situation I would have either dealt with it or removed myself from it. I find all this quite uncomfortable. I haven’t ever felt that I’ve really had to stick up for myself just because I’m a woman.”

Of course, everyone has had different experiences, and if Kate doesn’t feel comfortable having this conversation in the public eye, that’s understandable. However, it’s undeniable that the wage gap is a real problem that is in dire need of fixing. Women shouldn’t be receiving millions less than their male co-stars just for their gender, and it’s important to keep this conversation going. Luckily, it seems as though the tides are turning in great ways thanks to those who are willing to open up about a truly uncomfortable topic and tackle it head-on, and hopefully, every woman in Hollywood will feel as comfortable as Kate does in years to come.

(Image via Twitter.)