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Angela Bassett could now be one of television’s highest-paid drama actresses of color after landing a sizeable pay rise for her season 5 of Fox’s hit first-responders drama — “9-1-1”.
According to Deadline’s exclusive report, the star’s salary will now be “north of $450,000 an episode.”
If true, Bassett will be one of the top earners on network television for any actor — male or female — and could be the highest ever for an actress of color on a broadcast drama series.
Bassett’s co-stars will also be receiving a nice boost in earnings.
Aisha Hinds, Rockmond Dunbar, Kenneth Choi, Oliver Stark and Ryan Guzman will be making $80,000 an episode next season — a 25% pay rise. They will reportedly receive another 25% rise for season six, making $100,000 an episode.
White actresses Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston pulled in $1 million an episode for Apple TV+’s “The Morning Show.” Black actress Kerry Washington topped their earnings by raking in $1.1 million for each episode of Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere.”
However, those are both streaming sites.
In 2020, Forbes announced that Sofia Vergara was the highest-paid television star, bringing in $500,000 per episode for her role on ABC’s comedy “Modern Family.” Vergara also at least $10 million for her gig as a talent judge on ABC’s “America’s Got Talent.”
Despite the huge salaries, Forbes also reveals that the ten highest-paid male actors collected $545.5 million that year, almost double that of their female peers.
Still, Bassett continues to prove why she remains one of Hollywood’s elite.
“My purpose as a black woman, as an actress, has always been to portray excellence on the screen, to be proud, unapologetic, and without regret,” said the Black Panther queen.
“It hasn’t always been easy. And there have been tough times, days when the phone didn’t ring, even after What’s Love Got to Do with It, as well as moments of uncertainty and of doubt,” Bassett said at the 2019 Black Girls Rock! Awards show.
“But what women like my mother, Betty Jane, and my Aunt Golden taught me is that there will be times when you seemingly face insurmountable obstacles, but that’s when you dig deep into your soul for the courage and the fortitude.”
That’s why we love her.