Gordon Gekko said, "Greed, for lack of a better word, is good".

But some of Hollywood's biggest stars probably wouldn't agree with that sentiment.

Over the years, many actors have demanded more money but instead of being shown a seat at the negotiating table have been shown the door.

Here are some pay demands that didn't work out.



By the time Sean Connery had filmed his fifth James Bond movie in 1967, he was well and truly over the role.

He got paid $US750,000 (NZ$1.1m) and 25 per cent of the merchandising profits for You Only Live Twice, but he warned the movie company that if they wanted him to make a sixth Bond movie, it was going to cost them.

Sean Connery, what a player.
Sean Connery, what a player.

The Scottish actor demanded US$1m (NZ$1.5m) and a percentage of the film's gross profits if they wanted him to play 007 again.

The movie studio was clearly shaken and stirred by his request and Aussie actor George Lazenby was hired for just US$50,000 (NZ$76,500) to play Bond in 1969s On Her Majesty's Secret Service.


Three's Company

was one of the biggest shows in America in the 1970s and after four seasons Somers pushed for pay parity with the show's star, John Ritter.

Somers was being paid just US$30,000 (NZ$45,900) per episode, compared to Ritter who was making $150,000 per episode.

John Ritter, Suzanne Somers and Joyce De Witt from Three's Company. Photo / News Corp Australia
John Ritter, Suzanne Somers and Joyce De Witt from Three's Company. Photo / News Corp Australia

The TV network offered to raise her salary to US$35,000 (NZ$53,600). Understandably, Somers was less than impressed and didn't show up to set for a couple of episodes, which resulted in her being fired.

"They were stupid to fire me," Somers told Fox News last year. "But, whatever. It worked out for me and I'm the only one still working from the series, with no signs of stopping, so how great." To be fair, Suzanne, your co-star Ritter isn't working... because he died in 2003.


If you demand a pay rise and threaten to quit if you don't get it, you've got to be willing to actually walk away. And that's exactly what Daniel Dae Kim and Grace Park did last year.

The Hawaii Five-O stars wanted the same pay as Alex O'Loughlin and Scott Caan who reportedly got paid 10 to 15 per cent more than them.

The cast of Hawaii Five-O.
The cast of Hawaii Five-O.

According to the show's producer, Dae Kim and Park were offered big pay increases for the show's eighth season but a deal couldn't be struck.

"The truth is this: Both actors chose not to extend their contracts," Peter M. Lenkov wrote on Instagram.

"CBS was extremely generous and proactive in their renegotiation talks. So much so, the actors were getting unprecedented raises, but in the end they chose to move on. No one wanted to see them go — they are irreplaceable."

Lenkov didn't say whether those "unprecedented raises" would have seen pay parity among the cast members though.


Rob Lowe played Sam Seaborn (AKA the most handsome government employee in history) on The West Wing.

Lowe and Martin Sheen were the highest paid stars when the show started as they were the two biggest names, but as the years went on Sheen's salary kept rising and Lowe's stayed the same.

In season four, Sheen was raking in $US300,000 per episode whereas Lowe was still making $70,000 per episode, the same as Allison Janney, Richard Schiff, John Spencer, and Bradley Whitford.

Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn.
Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn.

Lowe felt his salary was too … low … and demanded he be paid more. But Warner Bros. wouldn't budge and the actor quit the show during the fourth season.

"As much as it hurts to admit it, it has been increasingly clear, for quite a while, that there was no longer a place for Sam Seaborn on The West Wing," the actor said in a statement at the time.

Times have changed though and just last night Lowe appeared on The Late Show in the US and pushed for a reboot of The West Wing.

"I think it's time to get the old gang back together," he said.

"I know all of the staff would love [it] … [but] it's all about Aaron Sorkin. He's the guy who wrote it. He's the guy who created it. He is The West Wing and we've got to have him figure it out.

"He says he'd like to do it as soon as he figures out a way to do it," Lowe said.


What a shemozzle this was.

Back in 2004 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation stars George Eads and Jorja Fox were both sacked for not rocking up to work during a pay dispute.

They were both five years into their seven-year contracts and were being paid US$100,000 (NZ$153,000) per episode.

CBS wanted them to extend their contracts by one year and offered to raise their salaries to US$120,000 (NZ$183,700) each per episode. But the actors thought they'd hold out for more and didn't rock up to set on the first day of filming for season five. It didn't work and they were sacked.

George Eads and Jorja Fox in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
George Eads and Jorja Fox in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

But wait, there's more.

Both actors were later rehired but CBS revoked their US$20,000 (NZ$30,600) per episode pay rise, meaning the stars missed out on making an extra US$1.76m (NZ$2.7m) if they'd taken the original deal.


Oh, and Eads claimed he didn't miss work on purpose, saying, "They think it's about money, and it's not. I overslept".