It's no secret that many celebrities get paid mega bucks to star in movies. With it becoming more and more common for films to crack the $1 billion mark, it seems only fair that the people helping to make the film so popular should get a slice of that action. But despite some films' insane popularity, some actors don't seem to get anywhere near the monetary recognition that their co-stars do. While there are many reasons for this - length of career, level of fame, voluntary pay cuts, and yes, even gender discrimination, it's interesting to read some of the craziest examples of pay disparity in Hollywood.
Below are a few examples of huge pay gaps between actors starring in the same films. Take a read through and see if any of them surprised you as much as they surprised me.
5. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt - Mr. and Mrs. Smith (2005)
Brad Pitt: Around $20 million
Angelina Jolie: Around $10 million
Many believe this film was the reason for Brad Pitt's divorce and the infamous Jen vs. Ange Hollywood divide. But while that was (or wasn't) going on, Brad was pocketing double what Angie was making for the action flick. What makes the difference between these actors all the more interesting is that this film was shot when both of them were insanely popular, yet Pitt walked away with double what Jolie did. Not to mention Angelina Jolie's Academy Award.
4. Robert Downey Jr. and the Avengers - The Avengers (2012)
Robert Downey Jr: Approx. $50 million
Samuel L. Jackson & Scarlett Johansson: Approx. $4-6 million
Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo & Chris Hemsworth: Around $2-4 million
What makes Downey Jr.'s huge payday even more impressive is that Iron Man isn't even the character with the most screen time in The Avengers - that honor goes to Chris Evans' Captain America! Despite his character being beaten in screen time, RDJ has been a Hollywood star for years, and through his fame and negotiating favorable backdoor deals tied to the movie's profits, he came away much, much better off than his Avengers co-stars.
3. Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels - Dumb & Dumber (1994)
Jim Carrey: $7 million
Jeff Daniels: $50,000
While Carrey was known for his comedic acting prior to this film, Jeff Daniels had never done a comedy film before. As a result, the studio offered up a measly $50,000 pay day. Eager to prove his comedy chops, Daniels accepted the deal, much to the studio's surprise. Meanwhile, due to the success of Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, which was released just months before Dumb & Dumber, Jim Carrey was able to negotiate his pay up to a cool $7 million - almost half of the $16 million budget.
2. Jonah Hill and Leonardo DiCaprio - The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Leonardo DiCaprio: $10 million
Jonah Hill: $60,000
By the time Jonah Hill starred in The Wolf of Wall Street he was already a very famous actor - so why exactly did he end up with such a small salary? According Hill the decision was simple - he would take anything if it meant he got to work with director Martin Scorsese. And hey, turns out it was an excellent decision! Hill was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his part as Donnie Azoff.
1. Tom Hanks and Barkhad Abdi - Captain Phillips (2013)
Tom Hanks: Around $15 million
Barkhad Abdi: $65,000
Despite Hanks having a very long and established career, it was still shocking to many just how big the difference was between his and co-star Barkhad Abdi's salaries for Captain Phillips. Even though the film was Abdi's first acting job, he was still paid a pittance - barely above the Screen Actors Guild minimum of $60,000 before commissions and taxes. Abdi was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, though on press junkets and tours he had to borrow all his clothes, and live off hotel stipends given by the studios.