20 Actors Who Earned Way Above 20 Million Dollars in a Year

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Iron Man is a “genius, billionaire, playboy philanthropist”, but Robert Downey Jr. who plays the role may not be far from the character he’s portraying. Being the highest paid actor for three years in a row, Downey may be the real-life Iron Man.

Just how much did Downey earn to be named as the top paid actor this year and who else is raking in millions of dollars for film and TV? Here’s a list of the top 20 highest paid actors in 2015:


20. Matt Damon ($26M)

Matt Damon being included on the top paid actors’ roster is no surprise as he is considered to be a “mainstay” in this list. He starred in the 2015 sci-fi film, the Martian this September.

19. Will Smith ($26M)

Although his latest movie Focus wasn’t as top grossing as his other films, Will Smith still managed to earn himself a big paycheck this year. He is expected to star in an American superhero movie in 2016, the Suicide Squad.

18. Shah Rukh Khan ($26 M)

A Bollywood star, known as the Leo Dicaprio of India, ranks alongside with Will Smith when it comes to the highest dollars earned by an actor in 2015. Khan is an endorser and a movie actor who starred in films such as Fan and Happy New Year.

17. Matthew McConaughey ($26.4M)

After winning an Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal in the film Dallas Buyers Club in 2014, Matthew McConaughey’s luck continues to be on his side as he is named one of the top earning actors in the world.


16. Daniel Craig ($27M)

James Bond definitely has a good year in 2015 as he comes back on the highest paid actors list. He owes his big paycheck to his contract to make another two Bond films that include Spectre, which will be on the big screen in October this year.

15. Chris Hemsworth ($27 M)

Besides being People Magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive in 2014, Chris Hemsworth also finds himself on the list of the highest earning actors this year – despite falling 10 places from his spot on this list last year. With three movies this year, including the Avengers: Age of Ultron, Hemsworth earned $27 million, tied with Daniel Craig.

14. Channing Tatum ($29M)

Starring and producing a sequel of the male stripper film, Magic Mike XXL (whose worldwide box office reached $117 million) Channing Tatum’s paycheck continues to rise as he earns a hefty $29 million this year.

13. Leonardo Dicaprio ($29M)

Despite falling a few places from his fourth spot on the top paid actors last year, Leonardo Dicaprio is still on the roster in 2015 with a $29 million paycheck, tied with Tatum. The Wolf of Wall Street is about to star in another movie, The Revenant, which will be showing in December 2015.

12. Johnny Depp ($30M)

Character actor Johnny Depp lands on the 12th spot on the highest earning actors in 2015 as he is going to star as Captain Jack Sparrow in the fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean, which is expected to be on the big screen in 2017.

11. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson ($31.5M)

The WWE superstar turned film and TV actor, Dwayne “”The Rock” Johnson earned a good $31.5M for this year following his box office hit film, San Andreas and producing and starring the HBO comedy series Ballers under Mark Wahlberg’s production company.

10. Mark Wahlberg ($32M)

The star of Ted and the new face of the Transformers movie, Mark Wahlberg had a good year if you base it on his paycheck for 2015. With the second installment of Ted, that earned a fine $549 million, and his own company producing Entourage the movie and HBO series Ballers starring The Rock, Wahlberg lands on the tenth spot of the top paid actors in 2015.

9. Akshay Kumar ($32.5M)

Landing himself on the top paid actors list is a Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar. Kumar is one of India’s most sought after leading men. Since his career breakthrough in the early 90’s Kumar has starred in 150 movies, including his top grossing films Holiday and Entertainment. Besides being a film actor, Kumar is also a host for the TV show Dare 2 Dance.

8. Salman Khan ($33.5M)

Salman Khan is another Bollywood star that banked millions of dollars this year. He is a movie producer and actor as well as a host of the reality show, Big Boss, India’s version of Big Brother. He is an endorser for several top brands and an owner of a clothing line which banked $30M in revenue last year.


7. Amitabh Bachchan ($33.5M)

A superstar of Bollywood that earned more than some of the Hollywood A-listers on this list is Amitabh Bachchan. He earned millions with his 2014 movie, Bhoothnath Returns, and his 150 other movies that he filmed over his 50-year career in showbiz. He is also known as the host of the popular game show, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?


6. Tom Cruise ($40M)

The Mission Impossible film once again earned millions at the box office, helping its star, Tom Cruise land a spot on the top paid actors in 2015 after the release of Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation earlier this year that earned over $500M in the global box office.


5. Adam Sandler ($41M)

Despite the box office flops in his latest films such as Pixels (2015), “The Waterboy”, Adam Sandler still lands comfortably on the top paid actors list with his contract to star in four movies exclusively for Netflix.


4. Bradley Cooper ($41.5M)

The Hangover star comes in the fourth spot after earning $41.4 million paycheck. His 2014 movie American Sniper, which he starred and produced (and was directed by Clint Eastwood), earned $500M in gross sales. This is another reason why Cooper is on one of the top positions in this list.

3. Vin Diesel ($47M)

Vin Diesel raced his way up to the third spot thanks to the top grossing Furious 7 that garnered $1.5 billion in sales where he played the role of Dominic Toretto. Diesel is set to star in his coming movies such as xXx: The Return of Xander Cage and Soldiers of the Sun.

2. Jackie Chan ($50M)

He may be best known in Hollywood as one of the stars of the action comedy film, Rush Hour, but actor and martial artist Jackie Chan, is a bigger superstar in China. His film Dragon Blade with John Cusack and Adrien Brody grossed $120 million in China alone. Other than earning from his films, Chan also earns through his merchandise and his own chain of cinemas.

1. Robert Downey Jr. ($80M)


Surprise, surprise. Robert Downey Jr. proves again that he has more than swag and great talent as he is named as the top paid actor, earning $80 million this year. Since 2013, Downey never left his top spot on this list and he has to thank his character Iron Man for this. His latest film is the Marvel franchise, Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) that raked in $240 million in the box office. Fans are excited to see Iron Man appear in his self-titled movie again, but Downey said in one of his interviews that the fourth installment of Iron Man is not in the pipe.

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