You may not realize it, but Amy Schumer is the highest paid female comedian right now. Last year alone, she made $17 million. Damn. She’s also the first woman to ever make the list of the world’s top-paid comics. While it’s awesome for her, it’s kind of crazy–and sexist. Yes, I said it. It’s S-E-X-I-S-T that a woman has never made this list before.
Of course, Schumer is pretty busy. She had a Comedy Central show and a tour with Aziz Ansari, already received a piece of her $8 million book advance for “The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo,” became a film star with her role in “Trainwreck“ (though she reportedly only earned $300,000 for the role), and she likely earned seven figures for the Bud Light Super Bowl commercial she appeared in.
This is extremely notable considering the huge lack of women in high paying positions in Hollywood to begin with–which Schumer is trying to counteract–both by making fun of it and actually doing something about it. For instance, five out of eight writers on her show were women, which is more than most TV shows. According to Forbes, women accounted for just 28.9% of writers across broadcast, cable, streaming, and film in 2015.
Part of the reason Schumer thinks she’s so successful is the fact that she talks about sex, which she also believes is a double-standard:
“I’m labeled a sex comic. I think it’s just because I’m a girl. A guy could get up here and literally pull his [penis] out, and people would be like, ‘he’s a thinker!’”
It’s crazy to think she’s also the first woman who has been the headliner at Madison Square Garden (which she did this past June). While Schumer is funny in her own right, so are many other female comedians–what about Tina Fey, for instance?
Even for Schumer, she’s tired of being labeled as the “female comedian” as opposed to just being a comedian, stating in GQ:
“All I’ve ever wanted is to be treated like a comedian who’s performing at your venue, who sold it out. Just talk to me how you would talk to Bill Burr, who was here the week before me. Like Patton Oswalt, who’ll be here next week.”
Just because she does have wealth and influence doesn’t mean it’s OK label her in ways men aren’t–because that type of attitude trickles down to the little guys like us–and no one wants to be seen just for their gender, as opposed to their skill.