‘On My Block’s Young Actors of Color Ask for Salary Increase on Par With Other Netflix Shows

Lead Photo: 'On My Block' photo by John O Flexor. Courtesy of Netflix
'On My Block' photo by John O Flexor. Courtesy of Netflix
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Two months ago, Netflix series On My Block secured a third season renewal. A heart-pounding and somber trailer for season two dropped along with the announcement that the show’s third season would film sometime in the summer. Well, that hasn’t happened yet, and according to recent news, it may not happen anytime soon.

Normally around the end of season two, when a show’s success is assured and a subsequent season greenlit, the cast is able to engage in contract negotiations for a pay increase — such is the case with On My Block. Actors Jason Genao, Sierra Capri, Brett Gray and Diego Tinoco are each asking for a boost in pay to $1.75 million for the entirety of season three which is said to be comprised of eight episodes. Each cast member would then be asking to be paid $218,000 per episode. For the first two seasons, each of the main cast members only earned $20,000 per episode despite the series’ consistent high ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and being cited as one of the streaming giants’ “most binged” original shows in 2018.

Unfortunately, these talks have been going on since May, with the third season being held hostage until things are decided. Netflix has countered by offering $40,000 an episode. Why is this a problem? Because even with what the On My Block cast is asking for, their salaries are far below what other popular Netflix shows’ casts are receiving. According to the Hollywood Reporter, On My Block’s cast wants to be paid on par with the supporting (note, supporting) cast of the teen drama 13 Reasons Why — all of who successfully renegotiated their contracts to receive $135,000 an episode with a stipulation that they’ll instantly receive another raise of $150,000 upon being renewed for season four.

Both shows, of course, pale in comparison to what the cast of Stranger Things received, but the On My Block cast understands they aren’t in the same realm as that show. They simply want a boost commensurate with the work they’re doing which, honestly, they deserve. It’s not a good look for Netflix when also considering the cancellation of One Day at a Time. Netflix should give the cast the raise and go on with the show.