Wanda Sykes Backs Mo’Nique’s Effort to Call Out Netflix for Gender and Color Bias

Update | Wanda Sykes spoke out on Twitter over the weekend about her disappointing experience with the streaming giant Netflix, adding fuel to previous claims that the company has offered women of color far less lucrative deals than their white and male counterparts for comedy specials on the platform.

The tweet was prompted by her fellow comedian Mo'Nique speaking out last week about her experience with the streaming service. Netflix “offered me less than half of your $500k," Sykes said. "I was offended but found another home.”

01_22_Wanda_Sykes Honoree Wanda Sykes speaks onstage at Point Honors Los Angeles 2017, benefiting Point Foundation, at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on October 7, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. Sykes spoke out in support of Mo'Nique, who is calling for a boycott of Netflix for gender and color bias. Sykes shared that she was offended by an offer from Netflix and took her own comedy special elsewhere. MMatt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for Point Honors

Like Mo'Nique, Sykes is an accomplished actress and comedian. She plays Daphne Lido on Black-ish, but has appeared on numerous other television programs—Broad City, Curb Your EnthusiasmThe New Adventures of Old Christine—as well as in films, such as Bad Moms (2016) and Monster-in-Law (2005).

Sykes’s missive came days after Mo’Nique posted a video to Instagram accusing Netflix of color and gender bias and calling for a boycott of the streaming platform. It has garnered more than 210,000 views to date.

In the video, she explains that she had been offered a $500,000 deal for a comedy special, comparing it to what she said were $20 million deals for Dave Chappelle and Chris Rock and a $13 million deal for Amy Schumer. “When we asked Netflix to explain the difference, why the money was so different, they said, ‘Well we believe that’s what Mo’Nique will bring,’” the comedian said.

Mo’Nique recounted that the streaming platform told her it didn’t go off of resumes, but then proceeded to explain Schumer’s higher pay as a result of her big-screen experience and sold-out Madison Square Garden appearances. “And then Netflix said, ‘By the way, we believe Mo’Nique is a legend, too.’ Why shouldn’t I get what the legends are getting?” Mo’Nique asks. “Please stand with me in this boycott of Netflix.”

Mo’Nique seemed bolstered by Sykes’s support, responding to her tweet with several of her own, saying the two should stand together and thanking EPIX for becoming the home of Sykes’ special.

She also posted a second video to Instagram, which garnered more than 240,000 views, about the revelation that Sykes was offered even less than she was.

“Now some would ask, how is it that Wanda Sykes and Mo’Nique, together, these two black women who have 50-plus years in the comedy game, be offered $750,000 between the both of us, and Amy Schumer get $13 million?” she said. “Make that make sense.”

A Netflix spokesman told Newsweek that the company does not comment on contract negotiations.

Update: This story has been updated to include a comment from Netflix.