Actress Mo'Nique suing Netflix for race, gender discrimination (filed Nov 14, 2019)

Actress Mo'Nique suing Netflix for race, gender discrimination
The lawsuit claims Mo’Nique was "given a low-ball offer that was only a fraction of what Netflix paid other comedians."



LOS ANGELES — Oscar-winning actress and comedian Mo'Nique sued Netflix on Thursday, accusing the streaming giant of racial and gender discrimination by trying to drastically underpay her for a stand-up special after offering other stars tens of millions of dollars.

The suit filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court accuses Netflix of giving a “biased, discriminatory” offer to Mo'Nique for a one-hour comedy special around November 2017.

In the 39-page filing, Mo’Nique calls out everyone from the top executives of the Netflix management team to highlighting the gender wage gap and lack of diversity in Hollywood.

“Despite Mo’Nique’s extensive résumé and documented history of comedic success, when Netflix presented her with an offer of employment for an exclusive stand-up comedy special, Netflix made a lowball offer that was only a fraction of what Netflix paid other (non-Black female) comedians,” according to the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages and was filed on her behalf by attorneys at the deRubertis Law Firm, APC and Schimmel & Parks, APLC.

The comedian was offered $500,000 as a “talent fee,” an offer the lawsuit claims was significantly less than those offered to men and white women for the same type of stand-up original specials.

“When the talent was not a Black woman, Netflix offered to pay, and did pay, astronomically more than it pays to Black women like it offered to Mo'Nique,” the lawsuit said.

In a statemented posted on Instagram, Mo'Nique said Thursday she had a choice to make, "I could accept what I felt was pay discrimination or I could stand up for those who came before me and those who will come after me."

"i chose to stand up," she said.


A Netflix spokesperson did not immediately respond to NBC News' request for comment. They have previously declined to address Mo'Nique's complaints, saying "Netflix does not comment on contract negotiations."

The suit said Netflix reportedly signed a $100 million deal in 2017 with comedian Jerry Seinfeld for two stand-up specials and an interview series. It also said Netflix reportedly signed a deal with comedian Dave Chapelle in 2016 worth $60 million in 2016 for three specials.

Chris Rock was reportedly offered a $40 million deal with Netflix in 2016 for two specials, the lawsuit said, and Ricky Gervais was reportedly also offered $40 million for a two-show deal around 2016.

The lawsuit goes on to allege Netflix initially offered comedian Amy Schumer $11 million in 2017 for an hourlong special and that she was able to negotiate an increase to $13 million over the offers made to Chapelle and Rock.

“Thus, Netflix reportedly offered or paid Rock, Chapelle, Degeneris, and Gervais forty (40) times more per show than it offered Mo’Nique, and it offered Schumer twenty-six (26) times more per show than Mo’Nique,” the lawsuit said. “In short, Netflix’s offer to Mo’Nique perpetuates the drastic wage gap forced upon Black women in America’s workforce.”

The lawsuit claims that Netflix lacked diversity in its leadership and reportedly turned a blind eye or did not act quickly enough when a senior executive and an actor in a series used racist language.

The filing claims Netflix’s Board of Directors has “historically lacked racial diversity and, instead, has been white-only for years. For years, the Board lacked even one Black member — let alone, a Black female” and highlights “in 2018 and 2019 respectively, Netflix reported that only 4% and 6% of its workforce being comprised of Black employees. In other words, while its senior management specifically lacks racial diversity, Netflix’s workforce generally also underrepresents Black workers compared to the general population.”

Netflix reportedly allowed actor Kevin Spacey to repeatedly make racist remarks, including using the N-word, while he worked on its series “House of Cards,” according to the lawsuit.

The suit also claims that in early 2018, Netflix’s then Chief Communications Officer Jonathan Friedland used the N-word in a meeting. Multiple employees reportedly complained, according to the lawsuit, which led to Friedland apologizing.

Later, Friedland reportedly met with black human resources employees and used the N-word again in retelling the incident, according to the lawsuit. Months later, Friedland allegedly was invited to speak in front of black employees and did not apologize for his remark.

It was only after that that Netflix fired Friedland and acknowledged he “showed unacceptably low racial awareness and sensitivity,” according to the suit.

Last year, Mo'Nique spoke out about the $500,000 offer she received and called for people to boycott Netflix “for gender and color bias.”

“Netflix is one of Hollywood’s most innovative companies, yet it not only perpetuates racial and gender inequality, it also takes advantage of a gender pay gap that disproportionately affects black women,” said Mo’Nique’s lawyer, Michael W. Parks. “When Mo’Nique, one of the most well-known black female comedians in America, faced that anachronistic attitude, she knew it was time to challenge the status quo.”

David M. deRubertis, who also represents Mo'Nique, said, “In recent years, the spotlight has appropriately shined on the gender pay inequities that continue to plague the American workforce. By this lawsuit, Mo’Nique is taking a stand against the most severe pay gap of all: the pay gap experienced by black women in the American workforce.”

After Mo'Nique came forward, fellow comedian Wanda Sykes also said she had been “offended” by a previous low offer from Netflix, which she rejected.

Sykes went on to later have a comedy special with the streaming service.

When asked at a conference earlier this year what made the difference this time around, Sykes said, “They moved that comma.”

The filing highlighted the gender pay disparity between actors Claire Foy and Matt Smith on the Netflix series "The Crown," where it was revealed Foy was being paid significantly less than her counterpart on the show, which later prompted an apology from show producers.

Earlier this year, Netflix content chief Ted Sarandos told the Makers Conference in California that the controversy over the pay disparity led the company to review talent salaries in its original and third-party series and make some pay adjustments, according to Deadline.

"What it did for us is, it had us go back and look at all of our productions and all of our productions that were being run by third parties, to make sure none of those disparities existed," he said at the time.
 
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Comments

sammyjax

Grand Puba of Science
BGOL Gold Member
Shes right... Tho she probably no longer has a leg to stand on due to poor timing of filing... Like ive been saying since he initial complaints.. Its no coincidence Netflix started handing out specials like candy to C and D level black comics after she went public...

man netflix been handin out specials to random ass broads like a mf for years and it didn't start after monique. it was hella foreign broads w specials on their before her.

monique on some bullshit
 

Amajorfucup

Rising Star
Platinum Member
man netflix been handin out specials to random ass broads like a mf for years and it didn't start after monique.
I said C and D level BLACK COMICS young man. RIF!!

A got dam bum ass Dion Cole and DeRay fuckin Davis got specials AFTER the Monique debacle.. They started magically handing out specials to chitlin circuit niggas.

This shit aint coincidence!!!
 

carsun1000

Rising Star
In the 39-page filing .....That's enough to turn everyone involved off. Some people are just happy to be paid. There are a whole bunch of funny black comedians that would have taken what she was offered. Live to fight another day....
 

sammyjax

Grand Puba of Science
BGOL Gold Member
I said C and D level BLACK COMICS young man. RIF!!

A got dam bum ass Dion Cole and DeRay fuckin Davis got specials AFTER the Monique debacle.. They started magically handing out specials to chitlin circuit niggas.

This shit aint coincidence!!!
8 black comedian specials before Deray
11 including and after, and it's gotta be taken into account that those two years were when Netflix really started to become known for its comedy

That's not a big enough difference to make that argument

Did you know who the Lucas brothers were in 2016? How many people do you know that know who Michael Che is?

Come on now fam
 

Amajorfucup

Rising Star
Platinum Member
8 black comedian specials before Deray
How many chitlin circuit niggas? Imma wait...

Did you know who the Lucas brothers were in 2016?
No. And i still dont.
How many people do you know that know who Michael Che is?
Che has an audience of 40million eyes weekly and his core audience are cac. He doesnt fit the criteria here.

Again, C and D muthahfucka D!! Learn to speak english first alright?
 

sammyjax

Grand Puba of Science
BGOL Gold Member
How many chitlin circuit niggas? Imma wait...


No. And i still dont.

Che has an audience of 40million eyes weekly and his core audience are cac. He doesnt fit the criteria here.

Again, C and D muthahfucka D!! Learn to speak english first alright?
you ain't got to make shit up dog, 40 million is blatant foolishness.

And blackish outperformed SNL in the ratings for multiple years, so by your own logic, Deion Cole is at least as well known as Michael Che. That's by your chosen metric, so not sure what you mean by he doesn't fit the criteria.

You didn't know who the Lucas brothers were, which goes to my point that the overwhelming majority of the comics on Netflix are not big chart topping headliners. So saying that they gave Deray a joint don't really hold up because Netflix has a much larger pattern of giving relative unknowns their own specials. Go down the list on Wikipedia, you MIGHT recognize every 10th name.

no namers getting an hour is damn near netflix entire playbook, which severely weakens a 'gave unknown niggas specials after Monique' argument.

And if we really being real about it, MOST comedians are not rock star status, and could easily be considered C and D listers.
 

Amajorfucup

Rising Star
Platinum Member
you ain't got to make shit up dog, 40 million is blatant foolishness.

And blackish outperformed SNL in the ratings for multiple years, so by your own logic, Deion Cole is at least as well known as Michael Che. That's by your chosen metric, so not sure what you mean by he doesn't fit the criteria.
I used estimates to make my point. Wasnt trying to be misleading. That point remains.. Che is a standup comic who is a writer and a lead guy on the worlds longest running comedy sketch show. He is FAR more mainstream than Deon fucking Cole. And i honestly didnt know Cole played on Blackish. But he is 20something years older than Che (im guessing), not nearly as known or popular and has never had a major network special. Netflix absolutely was NOT giving specials to his ilk prior to the Monique ordeal. To pretend these opportunities didnt start to cascade to near norm status after her conflict is head in sand bullshit..
You didn't know who the Lucas brothers were, which goes to my point that the overwhelming majority of the comics on Netflix are not big chart topping headliners. So saying that they gave Deray a joint don't really hold up because Netflix has a much larger pattern of giving relative unknowns their own specials. Go down the list on Wikipedia, you MIGHT recognize every 10th name.
Youre wrong. My point is that the network didnt start giving deals to C and D level black comics until Monique.. Im still waiting on you to show evidence to the contrary.. Fuck your opinion nigga.. show the data. This isnt hard.

And again, i know a corporate CYA when i see one.. I said this would happen before, during and after.. and it has. Its litigation prep and PR defense tactic.
Just saying, arguing that no namers getting an hour is damn near netflix entire playbook until they got them big chappelle and rock specials. Hell even since then. It severely weakens a 'gave unknown niggas specials after Monique' argument.
You continue to purposely use vague and broad terminology.. Now you're saying "no namers"... That was NEVER my point. They have trended toward head scratching deals with low talent black hacks that barely move the needle on local circuits.. Deray nigga!!?? Come on man.. This is blatant base covering 101.
 

rage

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BGOL Investor
Her problem is that she's watching everyone else's pockets, she saw Dave Chappelle etc getting big cheques not realizing that Dave and others were on the road steadily gaining popularity and selling out shows.She thinks because she won an oscar for a non comedic role they should be offering her big bucks.
 

sammyjax

Grand Puba of Science
BGOL Gold Member
I used estimates to make my point. Wasnt trying to be misleading.
damn near 10x seems way more hyperbole to validate your point than "estimates", but I'll let you cook.

That point remains.. Che is a standup comic who is a writer and a lead guy on the worlds longest running comedy sketch show. He is FAR more mainstream than Deon fucking Cole. And i honestly didnt know Cole played on Blackish. But he is 20something years older than Che (im guessing), not nearly as known or popular and has never had a major network special.
you a funny dude. You projecting your ass off too but look here with yo old upset ass:

"Lead guy" (vague as fuck, projection) he's on weekend update. He's head writer, and the fact that I KNOW your black ass can't name a single other head writer for snl off the top of your geriatric ass dome is a referendum on the significance of that.

You're also hedging your shit with SNLs historical popularity, which means exactly shit in this context because che only benefits from the eyes that saw his ass on there the last 4 seasons that he's been there. Coincidentally, the same year blackish debuted. Both have dropped in ratings, but averaged out, they are really close in viewership roughly 33m to 35m (data). YOU didn't know he played on blackish (fuck your opinion applies to both of us, right?).

"FAR more mainstream" (vague, projection)-qualify this. What DATA informs this statement?

Bearing in mind that roughly the same number of eyes from roughly the same demo have seen them both on network television in the same amount of time. Are you asserting that the nigga with the 15 year longer career is at a disadvantage? No numbers on their single Netflix specials apiece, so again, how do you qualify that claim? Serious question.

Bottom line, two comedians with Damn near identical network TV exposure (by the numbers) that landed them a Netflix special apiece have WAY more in common than not.
Netflix absolutely was NOT giving specials to his ilk prior to the Monique ordeal. To pretend these opportunities didnt start to cascade to near norm status after her conflict is head in sand bullshit..
Psst...hey you fucking genius...Derays special aired before monique made her original grievance. Not was in development, not was in negotiation. AIRED.

Please provide data for this cascade as well.
Youre wrong. My point is that the network didnt start giving deals to C and D level black comics until Monique.. Im still waiting on you to show evidence to the contrary..
See above

Fuck your opinion nigga.. show the data. This isnt hard.
again, see above. And data is conspicuously missing from all that shit you typed, to say "this isn't hard"...not one fucking number lol you were serious too.
And again, i know a corporate CYA when i see one.. I said this would happen before, during and after.. and it has. Its litigation prep and PR defense tactic.
nigga. Are you for real? This shit is not that serious lol its called making my point. Again, this assertion is YOUR hedge against being wrong, and again, a projection.

You continue to purposely use vague and broad terminology.. Now you're saying "no namers"... That was NEVER my point. They have trended toward head scratching deals with low talent black hacks that barely move the needle on local circuits.. Deray nigga!!?? Come on man.. This is blatant base covering 101.
Come on man smh

If you want to split hairs between no namers and C and D listers, which to me seem like fucking synonyms, then fuck it sub in C and D listers you gotdamn weirdo lol wtf man. Silliest point of your whole argument there.

Chris Tucker
Mike Epps
Hannibal Burress
Cedric the Entertainer
Trevor Noah
Lucas Brothers
Tracy Morgan
Deray Davis

These were the black comics that had hours before monique made her initial complaint

There's some name recognition there for a few of them for sure. I'd say a GENEROUS half of them were selling out large venues at ANY point during their career, and MAYBE 2 were when they did their specials.
 

exiledking

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
I will wait to see what the official filling says. Who knows, maybe she has a smoking gun or she has a good reason to believe they will give her a descent settlement. Of course i am going to laugh my ass off, if her settlement ends up being close to what she would have gotten if she did the special.
Bruh... it’s Mo’Nique.
 

BrownTurd

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
Monique has some valid points about the disparity of pay with black females and blacks in general. Her problem is that she goes about things the wrong way.

Let's be real. Is Monique really tying to help others or is her ego bruised. She act as if Neflix is the only company she could get a deal with.
 

ronmch20

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
A fat funky no class bitch who won an Oscar for playing a fat, funky, no class bitch and now thinks she's not being adequately compensated for essentially playing herself. I'm sure that when a role for a fat funky bitch opens up she'll make the short list. :rolleyes:
 

mrcmd187

Controversy Creates Cash
BGOL Investor
Monique has some valid points about the disparity of pay with black females and blacks in general. Her problem is that she goes about things the wrong way.

Let's be real. Is Monique really tying to help others or is her ego bruised. She act as if Neflix is the only company she could get a deal with.
Her ego is bruised and her husband is steady pushing her, Netflix has had to many people of color on there to even warrant a case like this. She burnt all bridges and on her own little island throwing stones still. If she wasn't blackballed than she will be now, no company wants that heat.
 

man-machine

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
Does anybody know any Monique jokes off the top of your head?

Good luck to her in her lawsuit but she isn't funny.
Did you hear the one about the above-average comedian who turned down half a million dollars for a few hours work while other talented comedians all over the country are working for nothing or next to nothing?

But Seriously Folks,

Show Business is not some kind of Government / Union job where Longevity determines overall worth. Show Business is the ultimate popularity contest. As they say, When you're Hot You're Hot and When you're Not you're Not. Monique has been lukewarm for a minute now. Lawsuits and Internet complaining is no way to build a "Brand".
 

BK Pop

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
It's a fucking offer. Either you accept it, negotiate it or reject it. She act like they gave her one figure and then switch up on her. GTFOHWTBS. She better take her wanna be skinny ass back on the chitlin circuit and hope she can be an extra in a Tyler Perry movie.
 

RUDY RAYYY MO

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
Monique is the absolute worst!!!! I hope this shit case gets thrown out of court.

She is not as funny and in demand as she thinks she is.

She is a headliner for road clubs at best. She feels like she should be headlining stadiums like Kevin Hart. She could do that if she was popular enough and her fans demanded it.

She is a delusional bitch w/ a big mouth and will try to take down anyone that does not agree with her.
This is basically what I said, but to add that Amu Schumer sold out MSG before she got her Netflix deal
 

Cannibal

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
It was an extremely insulting offer and suing them is a clap back. Now I personally don't find her genre of comedy funny, but that is just embarrassing. Schumer gets 11 mill and I get 500K, c'mon man. Really? Imagine if that was you. I just wouldn't do it. Don't know if I would sue, but she is definitely putting their dirty drawls out for everyone to see. Is she really 40 times unfunnier than the rest? If she was really 40 times unfunnier (in reference to other offers) then why would they even offer her the opportunity? Really. I know Chris Rock, Seinfield, Chappell, these names are world renown. Definite headliners, but 500K bruh that's a slap.
 

Picasso

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
Monique has some valid points about the disparity of pay with black females and blacks in general. Her problem is that she goes about things the wrong way.

Let's be real. Is Monique really tying to help others or is her ego bruised. She act as if Neflix is the only company she could get a deal with.
How does Mo’Nique or us know about the pay disparity with Blacks/whites/women and men?

We know how much the hottest comedians in the world were paid, and how much Mo’Nique was offered. We don’t know what anyone else was offered to compare.

It was an extremely insulting offer and suing them is a clap back. Now I personally don't find her genre of comedy funny, but that is just embarrassing. Schumer gets 11 mill and I get 500K, c'mon man. Really? Imagine if that was you. I just wouldn't do it. Don't know if I would sue, but she is definitely putting their dirty drawls out for everyone to see. Is she really 40 times unfunnier than the rest? If she was really 40 times unfunnier (in reference to other offers) then why would they even offer her the opportunity? Really. I know Chris Rock, Seinfield, Chappell, these names are world renown. Definite headliners, but 500K bruh that's a slap.
It’s not about a if Schumer is funny to you or not. It’s about popularity and selling tickets. Amy was the hottest female comedian at the time. I said “Hottest”, not the best. She was selling out venues and was the star in movies. She was on a much larger scale so she commanded much larger money than Mo’Nique.

I’m not sure why this is so hard to understand for people and Mo’Nique? :confused:

We’d need to know what the other comedians were being paid to determine if there’s a disparity.
 

Amajorfucup

Rising Star
Platinum Member
damn near 10x seems way more hyperbole to validate your point than "estimates", but I'll let you cook.
10x huh? It was actually closer to dam near 5x.. So much for hypoerbole i guess.
you a funny dude. You projecting your ass off too but look here with yo old upset ass:
Not sure you know what projection means.. You should probably stop using it until you do. Just an fyi.
"Lead guy" (vague as fuck, projection) he's on weekend update. He's head writer, and the fact that I KNOW your black ass can't name a single other head writer for snl off the top of your geriatric ass dome is a referendum on the significance of that.

You're also hedging your shit with SNLs historical popularity, which means exactly shit in this context because che only benefits from the eyes that saw his ass on there the last 4 seasons that he's been there. Coincidentally, the same year blackish debuted. Both have dropped in ratings, but averaged out, they are really close in viewership roughly 33m to 35m (data). YOU didn't know he played on blackish (fuck your opinion applies to both of us, right?).

"FAR more mainstream" (vague, projection)-qualify this. What DATA informs this statement?
Whats vague about "lead guy/ head writer"? Its literally the opposite of vague you block head buffoon. And making that point isnt a referendum on my argument.. its evidence in support of it you dam fool. And no need to hedge anything.. the popularity of SNL speaks for itself... And Che's mainstream appeal and relevance are quantifiable by his presence on network television and having headlined his own comedy specials while still in his early 30s . Arguing against the fact is nonsensical bullshit.
Psst...hey you fucking genius...Derays special aired before monique made her original grievance. Not was in development, not was in negotiation. AIRED.
Heres your first valid counterpoint. Derays special aired the same month Monique frist went public with her grievance .. This is an argument in Netlifx favor.. But one that can also be used as the exception to the rule.
nigga. Are you for real? This shit is not that serious lol its called making my point. Again, this assertion is YOUR hedge against being wrong, and again, a projection.
This is not what hedging means. You're abusing the english lexicon. Please refrain sir.
If you want to split hairs between no namers and C and D listers, which to me seem like fucking synonyms, then fuck it sub in C and D listers you gotdamn weirdo lol wtf man. Silliest point of your whole argument there.

Chris Tucker
Mike Epps
Hannibal Burress
Cedric the Entertainer
Trevor Noah
Lucas Brothers
Tracy Morgan
Deray Davis
You shouldnt label arguments as silly or weird and then proceed to group most of the above as C and D list comics while adding them on a list wth Deray fucking Davis. Nigga kill yourself.
 

Picasso

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
its always BUSINESS
but our culture cant see past the DRAMA

Katt was talking FACTS and NUMBERS, and this was a year ago

no one heard it because our culture were too entrenched in the Tiffany Haddish/ Monique/ Katt beef.
We all saw it and continued to state that it was about the numbers, where you been?

It's been stated in this thread repeatedly.
 

Picasso

Rising Star
BGOL Investor
OUR CULTURE is more than this thread, i specifically stated OUR CULTURE in my comment
I’m unable to determine how OUR ENTIRE CULTURE feels.

I go by what I hear and what I see. And what I see is most talking about her popularity or lack thereof contributing to the low 500k offer in comparison to the others.
 
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