Ricky Gervais Made a Great Point About Equal Pay in Hollywood — In the Worst Possible Way

Source: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

Ricky Gervais took time in his opening monologue between jokes about Caitlyn Jenner and Sean Penn to talk about equal pay. Unfortunately, he did it in the most awkward fashion possible.

Referencing Jennifer Lawrence's op-ed in Lena Dunham's newsletter about the pay gap, Gervais paid joking props. "Jennifer Lawrence made news when she demanded equal pay for women in Hollywood," he said. "There were marches on the street with nurses and factory workers saying, 'How the hell can a 25-year-old live on $52 million?!'"

That discomfort is something Lawrence herself alluded to in her op-ed. "It's hard for me to speak about my experience as a working woman because I can safely say my problems aren't exactly relatable," she wrote. However, she wrote the piece because she wanted to use that position of privilege to speak on a more expansive issue.

Source: Giphy

Gervais didn't stop with Lawrence, though. He moved on to talking about his pay versus Tina Fey and Amy Poehler's pay for hosting the show the previous three years. "I'm getting paid exactly the same as Tina and Amy did last year," he said. "No, I know, there was two of them. But it's not my fault if they wanted to share the money, is it?"

Source: Mic/YouTube
Source: Mic/YouTube
Source: Mic/YouTube

"It's funny 'cause it's true," he added. The "true" part of that, he's certainly not wrong about. Women do get paid significantly less than their male counterparts, just as in nearly every other industry. Additionally, there are fewer opportunities for women both in front of and behind the camera — despite the fact that movies about women do better at the box office.

Unfortunately, with such an inelegant messenger as Gervais, the smart ideas may have been lost in the shuffle. Watch the full monologue below.

Source: YouTube

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Kevin O'Keeffe

Kevin is the arts editor at Mic, writing about inclusion and representation in pop culture. He is based in New York and can be reached at kevin@mic.com.

MORE FROM

The 'Pretty Little Liars' series finale tackled fertility and it was the realest the show ever got

British evil twin aside, the 'Pretty Little Liars' finale dealt with a serious issue in a sober way.

'Baby Driver' reviews: Critics are in love with Edgar Wright's latest high-octane film

'Baby Driver' is being called one of the summer's best films.

'America's Got Talent' contestant Johnny Manuel dominates Whitney Houston ballad

The Flint, Michigan, native missed a shot at a music career in his teens. Now he wants a second chance.

How much money does the winner of 'Big Brother' season 19 get?

After battling it out all summer, the winner of 'Big Brother' gets a big payout.

'Game of Thrones' star Emilia Clarke filmed more in Belfast. What does that mean for Daenerys?

Many of the series' interior shots are filmed at Titanic Studios in Belfast.

Iggy Azalea shuts down potential feud with Halsey: "I don't know her"

Rapper Iggy Azalea is taking the high road when it comes to Halsey's comments.

The 'Pretty Little Liars' series finale tackled fertility and it was the realest the show ever got

British evil twin aside, the 'Pretty Little Liars' finale dealt with a serious issue in a sober way.

'Baby Driver' reviews: Critics are in love with Edgar Wright's latest high-octane film

'Baby Driver' is being called one of the summer's best films.

'America's Got Talent' contestant Johnny Manuel dominates Whitney Houston ballad

The Flint, Michigan, native missed a shot at a music career in his teens. Now he wants a second chance.

How much money does the winner of 'Big Brother' season 19 get?

After battling it out all summer, the winner of 'Big Brother' gets a big payout.

'Game of Thrones' star Emilia Clarke filmed more in Belfast. What does that mean for Daenerys?

Many of the series' interior shots are filmed at Titanic Studios in Belfast.

Iggy Azalea shuts down potential feud with Halsey: "I don't know her"

Rapper Iggy Azalea is taking the high road when it comes to Halsey's comments.