×

Emmy Rossum Has Been Offered Parity With ‘Shameless’ Co-Star William H. Macy — But She Wants More

The future of Showtime’s long-running series “Shameless” is being held up, due to ongoing negotiations with star Emmy Rossum.

Rossum, who’s been a lead on “Shameless” since it debuted in 2011, is in the midst of re-negotiating her contract for a potential eighth season. Sources close to the show tell Variety that months ago, the actress was offered pay parity with her co-star William H. Macy — but she is asking to be paid more.

An insider says Showtime wants to renew the show for Season 8, but won’t proceed until resolving Rossum’s salary. The creative forces behind the dramedy have not even considered a plan for the show to continue without her, our source explains, as all parties involved are hopeful to close negotiations with the actress.

Rossum is demanding equal pay with Macy, after seven seasons of being paid less than him, according to a report published earlier today by the Hollywood Reporter. A source tells Variety she has in fact been offered equal pay. But she is holding out for a bigger salary than Macy to make up for the previous seasons where she was making significantly less than him.

Both Showtime and Warner Bros. TV, the studio behind “Shameless,” declined to comment. Reps for Rossum didn’t immediately respond to Variety‘s calls.

A source close to “Shameless” tells Variety that the network and studio take the income disparity very seriously, but insist that the offer for parity has been on the table for a while and is not being accepted by Rossum’s team. By offering her the same salary as Macy, this person says the network and studio are “clearly acknowledging her importance to the show” and how her role has evolved into a crucial part over the years. “It hasn’t even been contemplated doing the show without her,” adds the source.

Rossum’s salary dispute comes at a time when equal pay has become a prominent conversation in the industry, led by actresses like Patricia Arquette and Jennifer Lawrence.

At the time “Shameless” premiered, Macy, 66, was arguably more well-known than Rossum, 30. Though the actress was coming off of films like “The Day After Tomorrow” and “Phantom of the Opera” for which she was nominated for a Golden Globe, Macy had already won multiple Emmys, plus had an Oscar nomination, Golden Globe and SAG nominations.

For his work on “Shameless,” Macy has been nominated for three Emmys, a Golden Globe, and won a SAG Award. Rossum has been nominated for two Critics Choice Awards, but never an Emmy, SAG Award or Golden Globe. Awards recognition typically helps actors to negotiate a pay raise.

Rossum has renegotiated her salary since “Shameless” debuted. An insider says she got a significant increase from her original deal several seasons ago, as did Macy. Macy recently closed a new deal for the potential eighth season — the same deal that is now being offered to Rossum.

More TV

  • 'Lincoln Lawyer' Series in Development at

    'Lincoln Lawyer' Series in Development at CBS from David E. Kelley

    David E. Kelley is returning once more to the court of legal dramas. CBS has issued a series production commitment for “The Lincoln Lawyer,” with Kelley in position to pen and executive produce. Based on the series of bestselling novels by Michael Connelly, the show hails from A+E Studios in association with CBS TV Studios. [...]

  • Patrick Somerville'Maniac' TV Show premiere, London,

    'Maniac' Creator to Helm 'Made for Love,' 'Station Eleven' for WarnerMedia

    “Maniac” creator Patrick Somerville has signed on to helm two new series, “Made for Love” and “Station Eleven,” for WarnerMedia’s upcoming streaming service. “Made for Love,” which will be executive produced and directed by S.J. Clarkson, is a 10-episode, straight-to-series adaptation based on the novel of the same name by Alissa Nutting. The half-hour comedy [...]

  • Naomi Watts and Gretchen Carlson'The Loudest

    ‘The Loudest Voice’ Stars Naomi Watts, Russell Crowe Talk Roger Ailes

    Roger Ailes may have been the force behind the creation of Fox News, but the late newsman’s legacy will forever be his atrocious sexual harassment of several of the network’s female anchors and producers. Showtime premiered its new limited series “The Loudest Voice,” which chronicles Ailes’ rise and fall, on Monday night at the Paris [...]

  • Steve McQueen VSS

    Amazon to Launch Steve McQueen's Anthology Series ‘Small Axe’ in the U.S.

    Amazon has boarded “Small Axe,” the upcoming anthology series from “12 Years a Slave” director Steve McQueen, and will launch the series in the U.S. It will bow on the BBC in the U.K. and BBC Studios is selling it internationally. Amazon’s European content chief Georgia Brown revealed its involvement in the series, Tuesday, at [...]

  • Paula Pell

    Quibi Orders Comedic Murder Mystery From Lorne Michaels, 'SNL' Alums

    Quibi keeps shelling out cash for content: Jeffrey Katzenberg’s richly funded startup has ordered a short-form murder-mystery comedy written by and starring former “Saturday Night Live” writers Paula Pell and John Lutz, and executive produced by Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video alongside Seth Meyers and Mike Shoemaker. In “Mapleworth Murders,” Pell (pictured above) is Abigail Mapleworth, [...]

  • Sky

    Comcast Expected to Appoint Maximo Ibarra as New Sky Italia CEO

    Colombian-Italian executive Maximo Ibarra is expected to be appointed CEO of Comcast-owned pay-TV operation Sky Italia, which has been without a chief executive for the past seven months, a source close to Sky Italia tells Variety. An announcement is believed imminent that Ibarra will be the Italian paybox’s new chief after it was announced Tuesday [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content