For an in-demand actor, working in Hollywood can be a lucrative endeavor. After all, a leading man with serious box office draw is often an important element to any Hollywood film and for the actors who happen to fit that bill, the compensation is pretty great. The right actor can bring a lot of fans to the theater and that means a bigger box office and success all around. Each year Forbes puts together their list of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood -- and you might be surprised where some of your favorites land on the list.
On surprise on the list for 2019 really shouldn't come as a surprise. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is right at the top having earned a serious $89.4 million during the measurement period Forbes uses to calculate the list -- between June 1, 2018 and June 1, 2019. According to the report, Johnson will get an upfront salary of $23.5 million for the upcoming Jumanji: The Next Level. He also gets 15% of the pool from higher-grossing franchise films such as Jumanji: Welcome to The Jungle and on top of that he's paid $700,000 per episode for HBO's Ballers. Add into that royalties from his line with Under Armour and you've got a recipe for major financial success.
And he's not the only one. Entertainment lawyer David Chidekel of Early Sullivan Wright Gizer & McRae explained that some actors, like Robert Downey, Jr., have the ability to ask for major compensation due to the success of their franchise films.
"Celebrities such as Downey and (Scarlett) Johansson currently have extreme leverage to demand enormous compensation packages from studios investing hundreds of millions of dollars in making tent-pole films, such as The Avengers series," Chidekel said.
So who all made the top ten list for 2019? We've already revealed Johnson at the top, but there are some major names -- and perhaps a few you might not expect -- on the way to that top spot. Read on to see which actors are Hollywood's highest paid and be sure to weigh in on your thoughts about the list in the comments below.
Earning $35 million, Will Smith kicks off the list at number 10 and it's not surprise. Smith has had a solid year with his turn as Genie in Disney's live-action Aladdin earlier this year. He also has some major projects coming soon as well, including clone-assassin action film Gemini Man due out in theaters on October 11 as well as the eagerly-anticipated Bad Boys For Life which will hit theaters on January 17, 2020.
Coming in at number nine with $41 million, Avengers: Endgame star Paul Rudd is having a pretty great year. There's Endgame, of course, but also Ant-Man and The Wasp factoring in as well. He also has some significant projectson the horizon for 2020 as well. The actor is set to appear in the Ghostbusters 2020 reboot as well as the upcoming Netflix series Living With Yourself in which he will not only star, but is an executive producer on the project as well.
Captain America himself comes in eighth with a solid $43.5 million, largely due to Avengers: Endgame. However, while Chris Evans' time as Steve Rogers is over, 2020 is shaping up to be another lucrative year for the actor. The Red Sea Diving Resort hit Netflix in July -- the actor plays Mossad agent Ari Kidron who, along with other undercover agents smuggle Ethiopian refugees out of Sudan to safety in Israel -- and Rian Johnson's comedy mystery film, Knives Out hits theaters November 27.
Thanks in part to films like Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, Adam Sandler ties for sixth place with Bradley Cooper with $57 million.
Speaking of Cooper, his spot on this list is rather unique in that he can actually thank himself for his success this year. While he is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe thanks to being the voice of Rocket Raccoon, his major moneymaker this past year has been A Star Is Born. Cooper cowrote, directed, produced, and starred in the film which went on to be a massive hit -- meaning a huge pay day.
It should come as no surprise that Jackie Chan pops up right in the middle of the list with $58 million. Chan is not only an actor but a martial arist, director, action director, stuntman, producer and more. His most recent film, Viy 2: Journey to China, was released August 16 by Universal Pictures in China.
One of the most prolific actors of Indian cinema, Akshay Kumar comes in fourth on the list with $65 million.
Kicking off the top three is none other than Iron Man himself, Robert Downey, Jr. As we mentioned previously, the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been a huge win for Downey, contributing significantly to his $66 million. The actor has a promising 2020 on the horizon as well, with Doctor Dolittle rilm expected in theaters in January 2020.
With $76.4 million, Thor star Chris Hemsworth comes in at number two on the list. Hemsworth has had a big year appearing not just in Avengers: Endgame, but in Men in Black: International as well. On the horizon for 2020's rankings are the Joe Russo-penned Dhaka (which does not yet have a release date) and Kevin Smith's Jay and Silent Bob Reboot which will hit theaters October 15th.
As we discussed previously Dwayne Johnson is the top of the 2019 list with $89.4 million and it's likely we'll see him near the top of 2020's list as well. The actor has Jumanji: The Next Level and Jungle Cruise both on the horizon and is involved in a host of other projects as well. There's pretty much nothing that Johnson can't do so expect him to stay near the top of this list for years to come.