"So to the person who said, 'We're going to starve them out until they have to sell their apartments'– you've already starved me out," says Porter as he also offered an F-you to Disney CEO Bob Iger.
Billy Porter is opening up about the financial struggles he is facing during the SAG-AFTRA strike.
The actor spoke with the Evening Standard in an interview published on Friday, where the actor revealed how the strike is personally affecting him.
“I have to sell my house,” revealed Porter, 53. “Because we’re on strike. And I don’t know when we’re gonna go back. The life of an artist, until you make f–k you money–which I haven’t made yet– is still check-to-check.”
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Porter shared that he was lined up for a movie and TV series “starting in September,” but now “none of that is happening” due to the strikes.
“So to the person who said, ‘We’re going to starve them out until they have to sell their apartments’– you’ve already starved me out,” said Porter.
The actor was referring to the quote published in Deadline attributed to an unnamed Hollywood exec who said studios wouldn’t negotiate until “union members start losing their apartments and losing their houses.”
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Porter also noted that actors are often seen as well-off in the public eye, this isn’t always the case.
“They think we’re entitled. Meanwhile, we’re getting six-cent checks,” said the Pose actor. “It hurts my feelings.”
“In the late ’50s, early ’60s, when they structured a way for artists to be compensated properly through residual [payments], it allowed for the two percent of working actors — and there are 150,000 people in our union — who work consistently,” described Porter.
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“Then streaming came in. There’s no contract for it… and they don’t have to be transparent with the numbers– it’s not Nielsen ratings anymore,” he continued. “The streaming companies are notoriously opaque with their viewership figures.”
Porter also noted the pay disparity between studio executives and working actors.
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“To hear [CEO of Disney] Bob Iger say that our demands for a living wage are unrealistic? While he makes $78,000 a day?” said Porter.
“I don’t have any words for it, but: f–k you. That’s not useful, so I’ve kept my mouth shut,” he added. “I haven’t engaged because I’m so enraged. I’m glad I’ve been [in London] but when I go back I will join the picket lines.”
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