Today in very cool celebrity news, we all get one more reason to crush on actor Benedict Cumberbatch. The ‘Batch just revealed that from now on, he will reject roles if his female co-stars don’t receive equal pay. It’s a pretty awesome move that, we hope, encourages other men to do the same thing.
During a recent interview with Radio Times, the Avengers: Infinity War actor explained why from now on, he’ll only do projects where women are paid equally.
“It’s about implementation. Equal pay and a place at the table are the central tenets of feminism. Look at your quotas. Ask what women are being paid, and say: ‘If she’s not paid the same as the men, I’m not doing it.'”
Cumberbatch continued: “I’m proud that [my friend and partner] Adam and I are the only men in our production company; our next project is a female story with a female lens about motherhood, in a time of environmental disaster. If it’s centered around my name, to get investors, then we can use that attention for a raft of female projects. Half the audience is female. And, in terms of diversity, Black Panther is now the third most successful film of all time.”
The wage gap is just one inequality issue that women are fighting in Hollywood.
In 2016, women working full time in the United States were paid just 80% of what men were paid. That’s a wage gap of 20%. The gap has narrowed since the ’70s, but we still have a long way to go. According to AAUW, “if the change continues at the slower rate seen since 2001, women will not reach pay equity with men until 2119.”
That isn’t acceptable, and women aren’t the only ones who need to participate in the fight. Men do too, which is why we’re so happy to see Benedict Cumberbatch take this stand. Now we just need more men to step up and do the same.