Octavia Spencer Reveals LeBron James 'Intervened' to Get Her Equal Pay on New Netflix Series
Octavia Spencer got a little help from one of the greatest basketball players alive when negotiating her salary on an upcoming project.
The Oscar winner, 46, revealed at a Sundance Film Festival panel that LeBron James stepped in on her behalf while working on a show together. Spencer is set to star as Madam C.J. Walker, the first black female millionaire, on an upcoming Netflix series James will executive produce.
“I have to say, when I was negotiating my deal for Madam C.J., LeBron James had to intervene,” Spencer said, according to IndieWire. “So we need all our male counterparts to be in the fight with us.”
The revelation came exactly a year after Spencer was featured in the same Sundance panel about women breaking barriers. She made headlines last year when she revealed that pal Jessica Chastain helped her get a higher salary on an upcoming movie by linking their salaries together.
“I love that woman, because she’s walking the walk and she’s actually talking the talk,” Spencer gushed of Chastain last year. “She said, ‘Octavia we’re gonna get you paid on this film. You and I are gonna be tied together. We’re gonna be favored nations, and we’re gonna make the same thing.’ Fast forward to last week, we’re making five times what we asked for.”
Spencer reflected on how much the equal pay movement needs allies when it comes to not only helping women, but women of color who are disproportionally affected by the gender wage gap.
“I think my goal is to make sure that all women of color get equal pay, and all women get equal pay,” Spencer said at this year’s panel. “The only way to do it is to have these conversations, to talk numbers with your costars. Jessica and I stood together, and that was interesting that she would take that position — well, I mean, she is Jessica Chastain — but we also need advocates and allies in negotiating.”