Sharon Stone Took One “Piece of art” Home From Scandal-Ridden Film After Finding Out She Was Paid Only 3.5% of Michael Douglas’ Salary

Sharon Stone was paid less compared to her male co-star in Basic Instinct

sharon stone took one “piece of art” home from scandal-ridden film after finding out she was paid only 3.5% of michael douglas’ salary


  • Appearing in 1992's Basic Instinct changed the course of Sharon Stone's career forever
  • The film became a commercial success and is known for its creative portrayal of sexuality in Hollywood cinema.
  • The actress was paid just $500,000 USD compared to her male co-star, Michael Douglas—who earned a whopping $14 million.
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Appearing in 1992’s Basic Instinct changed the course of Sharon Stone’s career forever. For those unfamiliar with her scene (that sparked controversy) in Basic Instinct, the then-32-year-old Stone was instructed to remove her underpants and perform. There, she crosses and uncrosses her leg.

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Sharon Stone
Sharon Stone

The film became a commercial success and is known for its creative picturization of sexuality in Hollywood cinema. It still remains a cult classic—thanks to that (controversial) scene.


But, the fact would be hard to swallow that the actress was paid just $500,000 USD compared to her male co-star, Michael Douglas—who earned a whopping $14 million. Although, Stone found her own way to compensate for her salary.

Also read: “To be the object of everyone’s desire is such a coup”: Halle Berry Considers One Forgotten Movie Her Most Important Work That Was Offered to Sharon Stone and Nicole Kidman 


Sharon Stone Kept White Dress From Basic Instinct Scene to Compensate Unfair Pay Gap

Sharon Stone's infamous cross-legged scene from Basic Instinct
Sharon Stone’s infamous cross-legged scene from Basic Instinct

In a first-person essay for InStyle, the 63-year-old explained that the scene was many pages long and she worked really hard to perfect it.

But still, the actress didn’t receive a good amount of money for that. So, she found her own way. Stone kept the “white dress and coat,” from the interrogation room scene. Though the Total Recall star has never worn the dress since then, she has it “hermetically sealed like a piece of art or a very cool time capsule.”


At that time, people thought that she had gone “crazy,” but keeping the costume from the movie seemed to be a really smart thing to compensate with the salary she has received.

And now, whenever Stone look back at the dress, she really feels proud because she learned how to speak up for herself.


Also read: “I lost all my money, I lost custody of my child”: Basic Instinct Star Sharon Stone’s Struggle After Her Life-Threatening Medical Condition is Heartbreaking

Sharon Stone Recounts Controversial Scene in Basic Instinct

Sharon Stone as the bone chilling Catherine Tramell
Sharon Stone as Catherine Tramell in Basic Instinct

Sharon Stone also explained in the essay for InStyle that how got ready for the controversial scene. “From the moment I read the script, I knew I was the right person for the role,” Stone wrote.


For her role as Catherine Tramell—a brilliant bisexual and alleged serial killer—she collaborated with costume designer Ellen Mirojnick. She then explained that Mirijnick took her to Rodeo Drive and said, “You [referring to Sharon Stone] can pick out any one thing that you want for your character.” They then decided to go for all-white because her “character had a very Hitchcockian vibe.”

Stone recalled when the director, Paul Verhoeven, asked her to remove her underwear. The cinematographer assured her that they could not see anything past her skirt. But when she saw the movie, she was shocked. However, she eventually negotiated with keeping that tiny white dress, so it was all worth it for her.


Also read: “Cause we were naked in bed together”: Sharon Stone Put Ellen DeGeneres In an Uncomfortable Spot After She Refused to Have S*x With Her On-screen


Written by Shreya Jha

Shreya is an Entertainment News Writer at Fandomwire. She has over a year of experience in journalistic writing with a deep knowledge of entertainment world. After completing her bachelor's program in Journalism and Mass Communication, Shreya is now pursuing her master's degree in the same. Apart from being an avid reader, she's a huge Swiftie and K-culture buff. So yeah, when she's not writing, she will be caught listening to Tay or watching "Business Proposal" for the 100th time.