Ridley Scott 'betrayed and angry' by pay gap

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The making of Oscar-contending movies doesn't often provide social movements with useful thought experiments.

Commenting on the reshoots of the Drama/Mystery - All the Money in the World - Ridley Scott had earlier claimed that the actors happily did the re-shoots. And what could happen if we didn't automatically accept that we had to choose?

The film made the headlines a year ago when Scott chose to reshoot Kevin Spacey's scenes following allegations of sexual harassment against the actor.

The situation in which Michelle Williams was paid a shocking 1,000 times less than Mark Wahlberg's $1.5 million for "All the Money in the World" reshoots is so typical in so many ways.

Spokesmen for Imperative, William Morris Endeavor and Sony Pictures, which distributed "All the Money in the World", declined to comment for this article.

The pair filmed with Spacey's replacement, Christopher Plummer, Thanksgiving week. The second was the idea that actresses (and all women) should negotiate aggressively for equal compensation. In comparison, Williams was paid an $80 per diem, which totalled to less than $1,000-less than 1 per cent of what Wahlberg got. Now, it has been revealed why and how Wahlberg was paid so much more than Williams and, the answer isn't in the least bit comforting.

Celebrities took to Twitter to voice their outrage about the pay disparity and express their support for Williams following Tuesday's report.

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But with Williams already on board and the clock ticking towards the release date, Wahlberg's representatives knew they had leverage over the production team, both the Times and TMZ said.

Both actors are represented by the same agency.

This would contradict director Ridley Scott's remarks to USA Today in December that "everyone did it for nothing". SAG-AFTRA, the union that represents actors, has announced an investigation into the disparity. "And I'll give you my Thanksgiving break, if that would help.' And they, to their credit, they only took my Thanksgiving break", Williams said. The New York Times reports Williams quickly agreed to re-shoot the scenes, but Wahlberg was the hold out and due to a time deadline his agent negotiated the additional pay. But these are details: Clearly, the reshoots did not actually depend on everyone working for nothing.

But the movie, about the 1973 kidnapping of John Paul Getty III and his grandfather's refusal to pay a $17 million ransom, now finds itself embroiled in a new scandal.

The problem here isn't that Williams failed to lean in enough. Assuming so makes unnecessary compromises routine instead of establishing fair practices as the norm. He asked his primary agent, Doug Lucterhand, to push for more money.

Short-term expedience can end up being costly - and not just for the person who didn't get paid.