HBO exec said ‘Big Little Lies’ case ‘raped’ network over salary

An HBO executive didn’t actually mean to compare contract negotiations to sexual assault.

“From a budget standpoint going into season two of ‘Big Little Lies’ without any options in place we’ve been…um…short of raped,” Francesca Orsi, head of drama, said at a Keshet-organized conference in Jerusalem, according to Deadline.

The cast of the hit drama, specifically stars Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, are rumored to have negotiated substantially higher pay for the surprise second season.

“As a show goes on they get more expensive and as shows get more ambitious they will get more expensive,” HBO programming president Casey Bloys said at the conference. “More money doesn’t always equal better but in some cases the scope of ideas do require it.”

This is how Meryl Streep landed a role on ‘Big Little Lies’

But it was Orsi’s graphic metaphor that struck a nerve, especially when speaking about a show that included a season-long plot about Shailene Woodley’s character’s rape.

“Obviously, I am embarrassed by my poor choice of words,” she said in a statement to Deadline. “We are extremely proud of ‘Big Little Lies’ and excited for the second season.”

“Big Little Lies” is expected to air in 2019 with Witherspoon, Kidman, Alex Skarsgård, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern, Zoë Kravitz, Adam Scott, James Tupper, Jeffrey Nordling and Iain Armitage.

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