Mo’Nique “Loves Us”
BY: JANELL ROBERTS
Comedienne and actress Mo’Nique is not perfect, but could she be right about the inequality that black women face in Hollywood? Mo’Nique argues that black women not only experience racism but sexism as well. Black women are paid far less than white women in the industry and are cast for lesser roles, roles that aren't as glamorous. Roles that are centered around being the best friend of the white girl, or the ghetto girlfriend or assistant of a superiority.
However, After numerous stand-up performances from Mo’Nique, she leaped faith starring in the entertaining comedy “The Parkers” - A series centered around a curvy woman and her curvy daughter in what it meant to be funny and fabulous. Her international breakthrough role came with her performance in the movie “Precious” a heartfelt film about a young girl battling with HIV and single motherhood.
Mo’Nique is a prime example of wage inequality in the realm of media for black women. From starring in comedies like “The Parkers” to heart wrenching films like “Precious,” why is it so hard for people to rally behind the misrepresentation of black women in Hollywood?
Mo’Nique was offered $500,000 for a stand-up special on Netflix, whereas Amy Schumer was offered 13 million dollars for her stand-up special. Some would say that Mo’Nique isn't as groundbreaking as Amy Schumer. But we have to take into consideration Mo’Nique 18 years in the industry compared to Amy Schumer. Amy Schumer has been known for her strong feminist roles, Just as Mo’Nique has. However, Amy Schumer has been in the industry for eight years. Monique used her identity as a curvy black woman to encourage other black women to become a star.
But what can you say about Comedian Tiffany Haddish who has become a idol for many feminists like Schumer and Mo’Nique, whose total revenue for her pioneering role in Girls Trip was about $140 million?
Some would argue that Tiffany Haddish was snubbed this award season. Some could say that it was due to Haddish’s lack of experience in movie films, but Amy Schumer has only played in two films "Snatched” and “Trainwreck.” Haddish made history by being the first African American woman to host “Saturday night live.”
Trainwreck made $140 million worldwide and Snatched made $60.8 million worldwide. “Girls Trip” is the first comedy in history to be both directed by and starring African American women to gross as much as it did. It became 2017's first comedy smash to earn 30.4 million dollars it's first week and $140 million worldwide.
Why are black women still being paid so much less?
Schumer has won 11 awards for her performances. However, Monique has over a dozen awards including, a golden globe for her role in Precious. So the question continually arises; why are black women underpaid and misrepresented? Why are white women paid 83 cents to a dollar and black women paid thirty cents to a dollar?
I understand the gender gaps entirely, but the pay gaps between black and white women are much worse in Hollywood and also in today's society. Maybe it's true that Hollywood systematically shuts down black women.
So when will black women receive the credit they deserve for their strong performances?