Forbes recently compiled its list of the world’s highest-paid actors, and George Clooney landed the number-one spot due to the sale of his, Rande Gerber and Mike Meldman’s Casamigos Tequila to British conglomerate Diageo.
Clooney, who did not star in any films over the last 12 months, earned $239 million (pre-taxes) between June 1, 2017, and June 1, 2018. Last summer, Diageo purchased the tequila brand for $700 million, which includes a potential additional $300 million over the next 10 years, depending on the drink’s performance.
This deal in conjunction with endorsements and earnings from older films placed Clooney in the top spot on Forbes’ list.
Other actors have followed in his footsteps, probably hoping for a similar windfall. Earlier this year, Ryan Reynolds purchased liquor company Aviation Gin. Other celebrities who have their own liquor brands or endorsements include Sammy Hagar (Cabo Wabo Tequila), Dan Aykroyd (Crystal Head Vodka), Justin Timberlake (901 Silver Tequila), Diddy (Ciroc Vodka), Ludacris (Conjure Cognac), Billy Gibbons (Pure Vida Tequila), and Kenny Chesney (Blue Chair Bay Rum).
Second on Forbes’ highest-paid actor’s list is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson ($124 million), who is credited with having the largest acting take-home pay in history. He now commands a paycheck of over $20 million per film and also gets a share of a film’s profits. According to the Wall Street Journal, Johnson also pockets up to $1 million for his “social media support” towards a movie. His most recent films include Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Rampage, and Skyscraper.
Robert Downey Jr. is third on the list ($81 million). He earned approximately $15 million for his small role in Spider-Man: Homecoming and much more than that for Avengers: Infinity War. His income over the past year is nearly double that of the previous year.
Fourth on the list is Chris Hemsworth ($64.5 million). He also more than doubled his earnings from the previous year with a little help from Marvel juggernauts Thor: Ragnarok and Avengers: Infinity War. His success is expected to continue with his appearance in a fourth Avengers film in 2019.
Rounding out the top five is Jackie Chan ($45.5 million). In addition to being a superstar in his native China, Chan starred in six films in 2017, including Bleeding Steel, The Foreigner, Kung Fu Yoga and The Lego Ninjago Movie. He makes additional earnings from producing, endorsements, and his own line of movie theatres.
The top 10 highest-paid actors earned a total of $748.5 million over the last year. They also include Will Smith ($42 million). Akshay Kumar ($40.5 million), Adam Sandler ($39.5 million), Salman Khan ($38.5 million), and Chris Evans ($34 million).