The E! boss just threw some cold water on former employee Catt Sadler’s claims of income inequality at the cable channel.
“There is a lot of misinformation out there,” Frances Berwick, president of NBCUniversal Cable’s Lifestyle Networks, said Tuesday of the controversy that spilled onto the Golden Globes red carpet on Sunday. “Catt Sadler and Jason Kennedy had different roles and therefore different salaries.”
“Catt was focused on daytime, Jason Kennedy is on prime evening news and the red carpet,” the E! boss continued at the Television Critics Association press tour. “Our employees’ salaries are based on their roles and their expertise, regardless of gender. So we wish Catt well, but I hope that sets the record straight.”
Here’s what Sadler said last month in explaining why she suddenly left E!
“There was a massive disparity in pay between my similarly situated male co-host and myself,” she said. “More recently, when E! reached out to renew and extend my deal, I learned that he [Kennedy] wasn’t just making a little more than I was. In fact, he was making close to double my salary for the past several years.”
At the time, Sadler appeared to be referring to Kennedy, her “E! News” and “E! News Weekend” co-host.
In her statement, Sadler said she and her team repeatedly “asked for what I know I deserve,” but were denied each time. Citing a “close friend and colleague” who started at the network the same time she did, Sadler said “how can I operate with integrity and stay on at E if they’re not willing to pay me the same as him? Or at least come close?”
“How can I accept an offer that shows they do not value my contributions and paralleled dedication all these years? How can I not echo the actions of my heroes and stand for what is right no matter what the cost? How can I remain silent when my rights under the law have been violated?” she continued.
Stars like Jennifer Lawrence, Eva Longoria and Debra Messing have since publicly lent their voices of support to Sadler.
Sadler joined the network in 2010. In addition to “E! News,” she also hosted several of E!’s “Live From the Red Carpet” shows and was one of three hosts on the daytime talk show “Daily Pop,” which launched in May.