There’s yet more evidence of the enduring pay gap between men and women in the entertainment industry.
On Thursday, Forbes magazine released its list of the highest paid comedians. And while the list is undoubtedly full of funny people, there’s a big, big problem: Not a single one of them is a woman.
Jerry Seinfeld topped the list with $36 million, followed by Kevin Hart at $28.8 million and Terry Fator at $21.5 million. Jeff Dunham and Russell Peters tied at $19 million each, followed by Aziz Ansari, Louis C.K., Gabriel Iglesias, John Bishop and Dave Chappelle.
Forbes did acknowledge the absence of women on the list, writing, “The list, which mainly consists of veteran funnymen, is missing one important component of the comedy industry: women… the male-dominated field suffers from a lack of comediennes and, as with the rest of the entertainment industry, a pay gap persists.”
There was also the caveat that for a comedian to make the list, his or her primary source of income had to come from concert ticket sales, which bumped out a lot of funny ladies who focus more on TV and movies. Still, with all the hilarious female voices contributing to comedy today, we think it’s pretty ridiculous that not a single woman made the cut. Here are seven we think should have.
1. Amy Schumer
There’s no doubt Schumer has ruled 2015. From a sold-out HBO special at New York City’s Apollo Theater to her sidesplittingly hilarious movie debut, Trainwreck, Schumer has had us laughing all year.
2. Samantha Bee
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee: now hiring fact checkers.https://t.co/iv7irMi8rc
— Samantha Bee (@iamsambee) September 16, 2015
Bee became well-known for her witty, intelligent brand of humor as a cast member on The Daily Show. This year, she moved to her own late-night show on TBS, where her sign-off on the first trailer pretty much summed it up: “I’m Samantha Bee, and I am female as f***.”
3. Lena Dunham
As creator, writer, producer and often director of her HBO series, Girls, Dunham has created a female-driven comedy empire.
4. Amy Poehler
The super-feminist funny woman revived her Wet Hot American Summer role for Netflix’s original series, First Day of Camp. That — and everything else SNL alum Poehler touches — is comedy gold.
5. Chrissy Teigen
Real-talking former supermodel Teigen joined the cast of the new talk show, FABLife, this year and promptly made us all crack up by challenging men to a hot pepper-eating contest on the street.
6. Ellie Kemper
— Boateng Duka Kofi (@DukaKofi) October 5, 2015
The former The Office actress starred in her own Netflix original series, which dropped this year. If you haven’t binge-watched Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, get on that.
7. Mindy Kaling
When Kaling’s show, The Mindy Project, was canceled earlier this year, she turned right around and negotiated a new deal with Hulu to keep it going. Good thing, too, because it’s hilarious.