December 17th, 2009
12:33 PM ET

'Harry Potter' star is top-grossing actress of 2000s

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Elder stateswomen of the silver screen take note: the box office darling of the past decade isn't Julia Roberts, Reese Witherspoon or Cameron Diaz. It is 19-year old Emma Watson.

Watson's run as Hermione Granger in the blockbuster "Harry Potter" saga has made her the highest grossing actress of the past ten years, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

Watson beat out 24-year old Keira Knightley for the top spot. Knightly has starred in 15 movies including three of the “Pirates Of The Caribbean” films, which have brought in box office receipts of $3.42 billion over the past ten years.

The wizarding franchise and Watson’s role in the animated “The Tale Of Despereaux” have taken $5.4 billion in sales worldwide. The success of the animated “Despereaux” pushed the young actress’ box office receipts beyond those of her male co-stars in the Potter series, Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint.

Watson was cast as Hermione when she was 9-years old, having only previously acted in school plays. She is currently a student at Brown University in Rhode Island studying art and literature. She will next appear in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”, parts 1 and 2 in 2010 and 2011.

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Filed under: Celebrities • Harry Potter • movies

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  5. Jan

    She is quite a talent and the part she played was as important as Harry and Ron. This was a trio of characters. She is a beautiful talented girl who I hope stays on the screen. She is fun to watch.

    December 22, 2009 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
  6. Catie

    Frank: Top grossing means the gross box office receipts brought in worldwide. That number is clearly indicated in the article, as is the number for the second-highest earning actress. I am sure that her receipts are the highest because of the constancy of the HP movies; she has been working for the past decade with relative consistency and not with gaps in between, I would imagine.

    And Hank, with misleading the general public...maybe people like you are easily misled, but the article says she is the top grossing actress and she is. Neither the title nor the article says or implies that she is the most successful by any standard other than that. Sorry you have to attribute negative motivations to the author. Maybe you could focus more on your spelling and capitalization to keep you busy.

    Mike, good point...I just looked it up and I think she was second. The mouse movie pushed Emma over. I really respect her for being committed to her education and hope she keeps going!

    December 22, 2009 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  7. Hank

    i agree with Marie's comments.

    this article was written to mislead the general public. it's nothing but a shock and awe method to try and convince you that ema watson is the most successful actress of the decade. you almost got me for sec, but i recovered. shame on you, author.

    December 21, 2009 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Michael

    Anyone who has read Harry Potter knows that Hermione Granger is one of the main characters.

    December 19, 2009 at 11:41 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Matt

    I sure hope she doesn't have breast enhancement surgery. Her natural beauty top to bottom is near perfect.

    I hope she has a long, industrious career. Like Natalie Portman in the Star Wars films, she has true, natural acting ability that should make movies enjoyable for years to come.

    December 18, 2009 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mike

    Pretty sure Maggie Smith was in all those movies as well...

    December 17, 2009 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  11. A. Smith, Oregon

    I wonder if Emily Watson is being pressured to have breast enhancement?

    I'm glad she is a student at Brown University, her British Accent at times was difficult to follow, however she appears to be born an actress and makes it look way to easy.

    Emma Watson looks so much more genuine than Julia Roberts ever did.

    It's really refreshing for a young actress to come onto the Hollywood scene without a boatload of skeletons in the closet and a sizable debt to producers and directors who more than often destroy all the quality's that a new talent brings to the big screen.

    December 17, 2009 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Marie

    I don't really get it.......I mean the movies that she was cast in wern't called "Hermione Granger ". She was just one supporting character in the movie and wasnt even the MAIN character. When you go to see a Angelina Jolie movie or a Cameron Diaz movie you are paying to see those women in a starring role. Those women specifically are the reason a lot of people pay to see their movies. I have seen all the harry potter movies and I didn't pay $9.50 at the box office to see specifically Emma Watson. So all in all, I just don't get why she is #1 I guess.

    December 17, 2009 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Frank

    What did she gross? You mention that she is the benchmark yet you give NO indication of the data you base your story on?

    December 17, 2009 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Debra R

    You go Em! you are worth every penny!

    December 17, 2009 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |

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