Actor and comedian Mo’Nique filed a lawsuit against Netflix over race and gender discrimination in a Los Angeles court on Thursday (November 14), The Hollywood Reporter reported. “Netflix courted Mo’Nique, saw what she had to offer and made her an offer. But the offer Netflix made Mo’Nique wreaked of discrimination; it perpetuated the pay gap suffered by Black women,” notes the suit.
The performer is suing the streaming company for racial and gender discrimination over the $500,000 offer she received to do a stand-up special. In the suit, Mo’Nique compares her offer to what other comedians were reportedly paid: Jerry Seinfeld ($100 million), Eddie Murphy ($70 million), Dave Chappelle ($60 million), Chris Rock ($40 million), Ellen DeGeneres ($20 million), Jeff Dunham ($16.5 million) and Ricky Gervais ($40 million). The 38-page suit also includes headshots of seven Netflix executives, all White, as visual support for the company’s “complete lack of racial diversity.”
“In short, as this lawsuit shows, Netflix’s treatment of Mo’Nique began with a discriminatory low-ball offer and ended with a blacklisting act of retaliation,” states the complaint. Netflix told THR that its offer to Mo’Nique was fair and that it will fight the lawsuit.