Mo’Nique’s Discrimination Lawsuit Against Netflix Moves Forward

Image: Susan Deloach/Showtime

“They tried to shut a b*tch out. They tried to make a b*tch disappear. But you can’t keep a good b*tch down.”

Those were Mo’Nique’s words in her 2020 Showtime special Mo’Nique & Friends: Live from Atlanta. And they continue to ring true.

A federal judge recently dismissed Netflix’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the Oscar-winning actress and comedian against the streamer.

In 2017 Netflix offered The Parkers actress $500,000 for a comedy special which pales in comparison to the millions Amy Schumer, Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle received for theirs.

After calling for a boycott of the streamer in 2018, Mo’Nique filed a lawsuit in 2019 alleging that Netflix’s treatments of her “began with a discriminatory low-ball offer and ended with a blacklisting act of retaliation.”

According to Deadline, Netflix has submitted two motions to dismiss the lawsuit, but the latest ruling from a federal judge will see the lawsuit moving forward.

In a recent ruling, Federal Judge Andre Birotte Jr. said, “Mo’Nique plausibly alleges that, after she spoke out and called her initial offer discriminatory, Netflix retaliated against her by shutting down its standard practice of negotiating in good faith that typically results in increased monetary compensation beyond the ‘opening offer’ and denying her increased compensation as a result.” (Read the full ruling here).

In a statement to NPR, Mo’Nique’s attorney David deRubertis said the decision is a victory for Hollywood.

“[This decision] is an important victory for Hollywood talent who, just like all other workers, need protection against retaliation if they raise concerns about pay discrimination during the hiring process. Employers in the entertainment industry need to take pay discrimination concerns seriously, fix them if the concerns have merit, and never retaliate against those who have the courage to speak up about equal pay.”

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Bryant Lydell

Bryant Lydell is creative, personable and quick-witted Howard and USC alum. He's the founder of The Top Tea, a songwriter, screenwriter and member of the casting team for Netflix's NAACP Image Award-winning hip-hop competition series Rhythm + Flow.

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