Jennifer Lawrence grabbed the world's attention recently, not for her stunning gowns or hilarious late-night talk show interviews, but for getting brutally honest about the wage gap that exists in Hollywood and stating that even she, an Academy Award-winning actress and star of two huge blockbuster franchises, has dealt with it throughout her career.
In an essay for Lena Dunham's Lenny newsletter in October, the 25-year-old star addressed how she was automatically paid less than her male co-stars. It was a brave thing to do and it seems that a young woman close to Lawrence's heart served as her inspiration for making this bold move. At a recent press conference for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay —Part 2 when asked whether Lawrence was motivated by her character Katniss Everdeen to pen the essay, she said, "I don't see how I couldn't be inspired by this character. I mean I was so inspired by her when I read the books—it's the reason I wanted to play her." She continued, "So I think it would be impossible to go four years with this character and not be inspired by her."
Lawrence admitted that even she struggled to keep Katniss's future leadership qualities at bay in the first few films. "I wanted her to be a warrior right away—I wanted her to want to be a leader. I had to keep my own personal emotions about her situation out of my performance," she said.
The Sony email hack in 2014 revealed that while she and her female co-star in American Hustle, Amy Adams, received seven percent of backend profits for the film, their male co-stars (Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, and Jeremy Renner) all made nine percent. In her essay she wrote, "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. 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.'"
Katniss (and JLaw) hits theaters in Mockingjay—Part 2 on Nov. 20.