Kirsten Dunst says she ‘didn’t even think to ask’ about Hollywood’s gender pay gap | Film

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Kirsten Dunst has commented on Hollywood’s gender pay gap, saying she “didn’t even think to ask” about the difference between her fee and that of the male lead actor in the same film.

Speaking to the BBC, Dunst said: “I definitely grew up in a time of major pay disparity between the lead actor and myself.” Dunst was cast opposite Tobey Maguire in the Sam Raimi directed Spider-Man aged 17.

She added: “Even though I had been in Bring It On and he hadn’t … I had more success in my box office than he did. I was 17, I was still learning, at that age I’m still learning my taste in film, I didn’t even think to ask. I didn’t even know there was a place to challenge it. That’s how it is at 17.”

Dunst previously commented on the same issue, telling the Independent in 2021: “The pay disparity between me and Spider-Man was very extreme. I didn’t even think about it. I was just like, ‘Oh yeah, Tobey [Maguire] is playing Spider-Man.’ But you know who was on the cover of the second Spider-Man poster? … Spider-Man and ME.”

Currently promoting her role in the controversial action film Civil War, in which she plays a war photographer in a dystopian US, said she sees herself as something of a role model: “I’m not in [movies] to have fun. I’m in it to give myself in the most honest, functioning way for my role. Hopefully the way I carved my path will help other actresses.”


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