11 Most High Paid Celebrities of the 21st Century


May 09, 2022 By Harry Evans

Those that succeed in the entertainment industry can expect to make among the highest salaries in the world. Few actors are on the verge of making billions of dollars. Many actors have made a fortune through their playing careers.

As viewers, we are treated to a glimpse inside the opulent lifestyles of our favorite performers. Have you wondered how much money your famous actor is estimated to be worth on the open market?

Many well-known performers get paid well for their job worldwide. For comparison, here are the wealthiest people in the world today. No other than American actress Jami Gertz, who has a net worth of $3 billion, comes out on top, followed closely by Indian star Shah Rukh Khan, who has a fortune of $600 million.

George Lucas

Before Jeff Bezos, Richard Branson, and Elon Musk started their space race, a courageous filmmaker questioned cinematic tradition in a world we are all familiar with. And George Lucas continues to profit from this storied canon. It's no surprise that J.J. Abrams (77) is the world's wealthiest celebrity because of the massive global success of his Star Wars multimedia property. More than $12 billion in global box office ticket sales have been produced by Lucas's second big picture franchise, Indiana Jones.

His net worth is assessed at $8.32bn, according to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index, which estimates that his fortune will decrease by $815 million throughout 2021. He has since essentially retired from filmmaking.

It all started with a single-wage discussion in 1973 about how Lucas became so wealthy. In response to a pay offer of $500,000, the director counter-offered a more petite figure of $150,000, equal to the salary he had earned on his previous production, American Graffiti.

Presciently, he requested all merchandising rights and the right to any sequels instead of the remainder. It was a handshake contract between 20th Century Fox and 20th Century Studios. With product sales of $20 billion and home entertainment sales of $4 billion in 2012, Lucas has earned $20 billion from the franchise.

The $4.1 billion in cash and shares that producer-director George Lucas received in 2012 from the sale of his Lucasfilm production firm to Disney accounts for a large chunk of his net worth. The acquisition included $1.86 billion in stock. It is estimated that the charity family foundation he founded has more than $1 billion in assets, demonstrating his dedication to philanthropy.

Steven Spielberg

Steven Spielberg is the second most wealthy celebrity, with an estimated net worth of $1 billion. According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, the three-time Academy Award winner has $7.95 billion.

Spielberg's films have grossed more than $10.1 billion worldwide as the world's most successful director. In 2021, Bloomberg estimated that the director of West Side Story had gained $850 million in wealth.

Spielberg, 74, is well known for his work on Jaws, Schindler's List, and the Jurassic Park movie. However, an internship at Universal Studios paved the way for his professional career. Following his departure from California State University, he was hired as the director. DreamWorks and Amblin Entertainment were both founded by Spielberg. Both enterprises are said to be still owned by him.

Celebrity Net Worth reports that in addition to the 2 percent share from all Universal theme park attractions related to his movies, he receives a percentage of park concession earnings in perpetuity. Spielberg gets paid a fee estimated to be in the neighborhood of $50 million a year for his work as a creative consultant.

Follow your heart's desires until they pay off.


Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, has an estimated net worth of $6.8 billion, according to an evaluation by investment bank UBS earlier this year of his Yeezy partnerships with mass-market retailers Gap and Adidas. A man who openly requested Google's Larry Page and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to invest $1 billion in his ideas just five years ago because he was $53 million in debt is outstanding.

According to Bloomberg, Yeezy sneaker and garment collaborations with Adidas and Gap were valued at between $3.2 billion and $4.7 billion by UBS. The Gap deal accounted for around $970 million of that total. After releasing two things with Gap, they both sold out within hours of one other. In September, a $90 cotton hoodie became the most popular item ever sold on Gap.com in a single day.

How he did it: Ye's primary source of revenue is fashion. Every year, he earns between $150 million and $200 million in royalties from Yeezy as the sole owner. Incredibly, he makes 15% of the wholesale price of his Adidas sneakers. Kim Kardashian's shapewear company Skims, co-founded with businesswoman Emma Grede, is still believed to be owned by her former husband Ye, 44, despite their divorce filing. There were $1.6bn in April's valuations for the company.

Ye attributes his turnaround to the fact that he is a "product man" who enjoys creating goods that alleviate people's pain points.

His first album, The College Dropout, was released in 2004 and quickly became a hit. He has sold more than 140 million albums and singles over his career, and his music library is estimated to be worth $110 million. This does not include Donda from 2021. According to Billboard, his music royalties totaled $6.3 million in the United States in 2020, with more than 2.6 billion streams.

The financial lesson here is to think about starting a side business or a second career.

Oprah Winfrey

According to Celebrity Net Worth, the richest self-made woman in the United States is worth $3.5 billion. Riches accrued by Oprah Winfrey come primarily from her media and entertainment company, Harpo Inc., and her interests in food and health-related companies.

Although she had been a regular on the Forbes rich list for several years, she was removed from the 2021 edition due in part to an increase in the valuations of technological businesses, which increased the founders' wealth. Even still, her yearly salary of $315 million is far from the 50 cents an hour she used to earn as a babysitter.

What she did to accomplish this feat was: When Oprah Winfrey first tried her hand at broadcast journalism, she was sent to the dreary world of morning news instead. She worked hard on her presentation talents; that first show rapidly attracted excellent ratings. In the mid-1980s, after a decade in the business, she syndicated her talk show and pocketed 25% of the show's earnings. That year, her income soared to $30 million. The Oprah Winfrey Network (Own), which she launched with Discovery Channel, and her humanitarian endeavors followed.

The performer has made many investments. In 2015, she paid a reported $34 million for minority ownership in Weight Watchers, the world's most popular weight loss program. By 2020, her stake in WW International (now known as WW International) had grown to $430 million.

Oatly, True Food Kitchen, and Apeel Sciences are all businesses owned by Oprah Winfrey and the oat milk company. In November of this year, she and Reese Witherspoon invested in the shapewear company Spanx.

Real estate is one of her other primary investments. Homes in California and Hawaii make up her $200 million-plus property portfolio.


Robyn Rihanna Fenty, a musician, and entrepreneur, is 33 years old and one of the youngest celebrity billionaires. She was the second-richest musician in the world as of August this year. According to Forbes, she's worth $1.7 billion, mainly because of her cosmetics and fashion companies. According to Celebrity Net Worth, she makes almost $70 million a year.

In addition, perfume maker Parlux sells 11 of Rihanna's fragrances, all of which bring in a substantial sum of money for the singer. The sales of a single perfume might reach up to $80 million.

Rihanna has sold 60 million albums and 215 million digital tracks globally throughout her career, making her the best-selling digital artist in history. However, the bulk of her fortune results from her successful endeavors as a businesswoman. Rihanna has made a career out of supporting high-end fashion labels like Cover Girl and Gucci, thanks to the success of her breakout album Good Girl Gone Bad in 2007. Parlux and collaboration with Dior in the early 1990s laid the groundwork for her cosmetics and lingerie businesses, which she later expanded. Both goods sought to fill essential voids in the market for inclusive items that serve a wide range of demographics, maybe inspired by Rihanna's struggles in finding things that worked for her.

The singer's endeavors have not all been successful. The Fenty brand of clothing and accessories is no longer available.

Investing in yourself can provide great returns, but only if you team up with people who have complementing abilities.

Jami Gertz

With a net worth of $3 billion as 2022, American actress and investor Jami Gertz is a household name in the United States. Manhattan knows her as the owner of the New York Knicks, but Los Angeles knows her who appeared in Less Than Zero, Twister, The Lost Boys, Crossroads and QuickSilver.

Jami Gertz is noted for leading a simple and self-sufficient life. The most valuable of her three homes, located in the city of Mailbu, is valued at $60 million. Jami Gertz and her husband are well-known for their charitable work.

Shah Rukh Khan

Shah Rukh Khan, a Bollywood actor from India, is referred to as "The King of Bollywood" because of his success in the industry. SRK, as his initials are known, has appeared in 80 Hindi films and won numerous accolades for his work, including 14 Filmfare Awards for Best Actor.

Having begun his acting career in the 1980s on television, Khan is now the world's third-richest actor, with an estimated fortune of $600 million.

Tom Cruise

In addition to being one of the greatest actors of all time, Tom Cruise is also one of the world's wealthiest actors. Three Golden Globe Awards and three Oscar nominations have been bestowed to the Mission Impossible series hero for his remarkable contribution to cinema.

With an estimated net worth of 570 million dollars, he is one of the highest-paid performers in the industry. His films have amassed fortunes in the tens of billions of dollars in the United States alone. At 18, he moved to New York City to begin his acting career.

George Clooney

We've ranked George Clooney fifth on our list of the richest actors, an American actor, producer, and screenwriter. A lifetime achievement award is among the many accolades for his roles in commercially successful films like Three Kings, Ocean's Eleven and Syriana.

From 2006 to 2009, George Clooney was included in Time magazine's annual list of the world's most influential people for three consecutive years. George Clooney, who began his acting career in 1978 with a small part in a television miniseries, is thought to be worth $500 million.

Rober De Niro

Actor, producer, and director Robert De Niro is regarded as one of the best in Hollywood. Many of his recent films include 'Meet the Fockers,' 'The Intern,' 'Meet the Parents and a slew of others.

In his early career in the 1980s and 1990s, people recall his exceptional acting skills in films like "Goodfellas," "The Godfather Part II," "Analyze That," "Casino," and "Heat." According to the latest estimates, Robert De Niro's net worth is expected to reach $500 million by 2022.

Mel Gibson

The seventh-richest actor is Mel Gibson, an American director, producer, and actor. This actor has been widely praised for his performances in films such as Braveheart and The Passion of the Christ. Among his many honors are the Academy Award and Golden Globe he got.

When he started in the glamour industry in the 1980s, film reviewers began to pay attention to him. According to the latest estimates, Mel Gibson is expected to be worth $425 million by the year 2022.