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Natalie Portman: Ashton Kutcher was paid three times more for ‘No Strings Attached’

Hollywood actress Natalie Portman, best known for her roles in "Black Swan", "Thor" and the Oscar-tipped "Jackie", has thrown her voice into the gender pay debate, revealing that she was once paid considerably less than one of her male co-stars.

Playing alongside actor Ashton Kutcher in "No Strings Attached", Portman has stated in an interview with Marie Claire U.K. that she was paid three times less than him for her role in the 2011 romantic comedy.


Natalie Portman
Pascal Le Segretain | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images
Natalie Portman

"Ashton Kutcher was paid three times as much as me on 'No Strings Attached'," Portman, Marie Claire U.K.'s February Issue cover star told the magazine.

"I knew and I went along with it because there's this thing with 'quotes' in Hollywood. Your quote is the highest you've ever been paid. His [quote] was three times higher than mine so they said he should get three times more."

"I wasn't as p***ed as I should have been. I mean, we get paid a lot, so it's hard to complain, but the disparity is crazy."

The actress went onto add that compared to men in many professions, "women make 80 cents to the dollar. In Hollywood, we are making 30 cents to the dollar."

After the news broke, Ashton Kutcher, actor and chairman of the board at media firm "A Plus", took to Twitter to say he was "so proud of Natalie and all women" that were calling out gender pay issues.

CNBC has reached out for comment on the actress' interview to Paramount Pictures, who distributed the film, as well as some of the production companies involved, but has yet to receive a reply.

Reigniting the pay disparity debate

Portman isn't the first actress in Hollywood to call out the industry on closing the gender pay gap.

In late 2014, film studio Sony Pictures was hacked, and out of the string of confidential data leaked, emails revealed that the female leads of 2013 film "American Hustle" – Jennifer Lawrence and Amy Adams – were paid a lot less than their male co-stars.

The Hunger Games star went on to pen her own essay on the matter, titled "Why do I make less than my male co-stars?" in Lena Dunham's newsletter, Lenny.

"When the Sony [email] hack happened and I found out how much less I was being paid than [male co-stars], I didn't get mad at Sony. I got mad at myself," Lawrence wrote in October 2015.

"I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early. I didn't want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two [movie] franchises, I don't need."

Actors Amy Adams, Christian Bale, Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner attend 'American Hustle' Cast Photo Call
Ilya S. Savenok | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images
Actors Amy Adams, Christian Bale, Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper and Jeremy Renner attend 'American Hustle' Cast Photo Call

Other actresses have also called out Hollywood, including Gwyneth Paltrow and Charlize Theron, with Theron saying she was upset when the Sony hack unveiled the pay disparity between the actors in "American Hustle".

"This is a good time for us to bring this to a place of fairness, and girls need to know that being a feminist is a good thing," Theron told Elle UK in 2015.

"It doesn't mean that you hate men. It means equal rights. If you're doing the same job, you should be compensated and treated in the same way," Theron added.

Broadening out the discussion on women's opportunities and female directors, Portman told Marie Claire that she didn't believe women and men were more or less capable than one another, yet added that there was a clear issue with female opportunities.

"'I don't think women and men are more or less capable. We just have a clear issue with women not having opportunities. We need to be part of the solution, not perpetuating the problem."

To read more about Natalie Portman's interview with Marie Claire, click here.