Kate Winslet Whacks Whiny Wage Gap Conversations: ‘It’s A Bit Vulgar’

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images
Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

As Hollywood’s gender and wage inequalities remain at the forefront of a national conversation, actress Kate Winslet says discussing wages in public is “vulgar,” and she wants no part of it and has no complaints herself about sexism in Hollywood.

Speaking to BBC’s Newsbeat this week, Winslet said that it would be “dangerous” for her to comment on wage disparity remarks made by many of her industry counterparts and that she has no plans to join the conversation.

“I’m having such a problem with these conversations,” she said. “Because they keep coming up, and 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?”

“I don’t think that’s a very nice conversation to have publicly at all,” she added. “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.”

In regards to equality in the film industry, Winslet said she has never been targeted because of her gender or experienced sexism in the industry, but made it clear she would have dealt with it herself rather than bringing it to the press.

“If I’d ever been in that situation I would have either dealt with it or removed myself from it,” she said. “Quite honestly, I’m sure I would. But I don’t think I’ve ever come across that. I find all this quite uncomfortable. I have to be honest. It’s a bit awkward really.”

She added:

We’re very lucky, and I feel so blessed. I’m perfectly capable of standing up for myself. I’m a strong individual, and that’s important to me. Yeah, absolutely.

I haven’t ever felt as though I’ve really had to stick up for myself just because I’m a woman. I can’t honestly say that’s happened.

Jennifer Lawrence published an essay last month in Lena Dunham’s “Lenny Letter,” in which she described how she felt when she discovered she was paid significantly less than her American Hustle male co-stars.

“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.’ At the time, that seemed like a fine idea, until I saw the payroll on the Internet and realized every man I was working with definitely didn’t worry about being ‘difficult’ or ‘spoiled.'”

As for Winslet, working as a full-time actress with a family at home has its challenges, but she’s grateful for a flexible schedule which enables her to spend time with her kids.

“I get down time and I also get to choose,” she said. “As a woman, for me, that’s huge because obviously I want to have time with my children and I get plenty of it so I do feel very lucky.”


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