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Chris Rock Has A Harsh Response To Jennifer Lawrence's Pay Gap Essay

"If she was black, she’d really have something to complain about."

Thanks to a late bit of surprise shade-throwing from Chris Rock, we might just have a new contender in the competition for the Best Beef of 2015 -- or maybe the First Beef of the New Year.

Rock isn't the star of this amazing longread profile in the New Yorker (that honor goes to Saturday Night Live and "Ghostbusters" star Leslie Jones) but we're guessing that this quote of his -- in which he namedrops and privilege-checks Hollywood fave Jennifer Lawrence to make a point about the role of black women in showbiz -- is going to be one of its most talked-about hot takes.

While discussing Jones' long, tough road to mainstream comedy stardom, Rock had this to say: "Black women have the hardest gig in show business. You hear Jennifer Lawrence complaining about getting paid less because she’s a woman -- if she was black, she’d really have something to complain about."

The "complaining" that Rock referred to was J-Law's Lenny Letter essay from earlier this year, in which she confessed to being frustrated at the film industry's gendered pay gap (although to be fair, the actress didn't exactly complain so much as lament her own failure to negotiate harder for her "American Hustle" salary out of a desire not to be seen as difficult.)

Regardless, Chris Rock makes an important point that bears remembering in the ongoing conversation about who gets paid how in Hollywood: that even if gendered pay discrepancies go away completely, there will still be plenty of work ahead to ensure that brilliant performers like Leslie Jones get the equal treatment they deserve.