Sandra Bullock is Hollywood's top-earning actress
August 3rd, 2010
11:22 AM ET

Sandra Bullock is Hollywood's top-earning actress

She may not have hit the jackpot in her love life, but Sandra Bullock’s finances this past year have been pretty golden.

According to Forbes ranking of Hollywood’s highest-paid actresses, Bullock is number one, having hauled in $56 million between June 2009 and June 2010.

Despite reducing her fee to play the lead in the film “The Blind Side,” her share of the profits paid off handsomely as the movie earned $310 million at the box office – a healthy return on an estimated budget of about $30 million.

Bullock easily surpassed the next two actresses on the list, Reese Witherspoon and Cameron Diaz, who each scored $32 million over the past year. That pair is followed by Jennifer Aniston, who earned $27 million.

The rest of the list includes Sarah Jessica Parker – $25 million; Julia Roberts – $20 million; Angelina Jolie – $20 million; Drew Barrymore – $15 million; Meryl Streep – $13 million; and Kristen Stewart – $12 million.

To reach their calculations, Forbes said they talked to Hollywood insiders like agents, managers, producers and lawyers to determine the stars upfront pay on movies they are currently shooting, as well as money earned after a movie opened in theaters. They also factored in earnings from projects like ad campaigns perfume and clothing lines.

soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. henshinagogo

    The reason they are paid that much is because what they do is non-duplicatable

    That is the most embarrassing thing I've read today. The health care sector is falling short on workers, as are electrical engineers. There are plenty of would be actors standing in light for their shot. Shows like "America's got talent", american idol, etc exist for a reason. We already know that an actor making a lot of money doesn't equate to talent. There is no short fall of actors. What they do is far from "non-duplicable".

    August 3, 2010 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
  2. jake the bum

    nobody would know the bch if her husband had not left her for a real person

    August 3, 2010 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
  3. guestHawk

    >sigh< I love this girl so is a shame she has had such a hard time with her private life.

    August 3, 2010 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  4. myt

    Hollywood is not paying much to women or men anymore. The days of the $20 million paycheck are over. That's why there are so many Australian male actors. They work for cheap. It really doesn't matter who stars in the movie if it has a following. Most of the highest paid actors make so much by taking a percentage of what the movie makes. Directors are notorious for it. Michael Bay takes a small salary and then a part of what Transformers make. He was the highest earner in Hollywood last year. If an actor or actress can get one of those deals it is way more lucrative than taking a bigger paycheck and then nothing. The Twilight and Harry Potter kids make a lot of money this way and supposedly they get some money from merchandising. If you don't like the fact that these women and the men in Hollywood make so much, stop paying for movies, tv, and dvd's.

    August 3, 2010 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jennifer

    I am getting a little tired of hearing about "poor Sandra"! Her Husband cheated on her. Okay...get over it. What about the woman that lives in middle America that is being cheated on by her Husband and she can't leave because she has 3 kids and makes 15.00 an hour. Poor Sandra can heal just fine in one of her 12 mansions. Also, 56 million for 1 year? You have got to be kidding me. Only the person that can cure cancer deserves that kind of money.

    August 3, 2010 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • @ Jennifer

      I smell a jealous hater. Celebrities shouldn't be given this much attention to begin with. You only add to it with your pointless comments.

      August 4, 2010 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  6. bella

    hey godd for her –bad for jesse huh guess that hook-up cost him big no wonder he is following her –sorry had to mention-i laughed at her good fortune and his bad-i do not see how some have some don't–just life i guess-

    August 3, 2010 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  7. mbane

    She earned it? You know what, I went to university for 4 years and have worked hard ever since at my engineering job and it would take me years to earn 1 million never mind 56 million. So don't tell me poor Sandra worked for every pennie of it. She's just lucky to work in an industry that believes in taking every possible penny from people's pockets. I design roads and bridges for a living but I don't get any royalties from people every time some drives on my roads or crosses one of my bridges, do I? The system is broken and needs to be fixed.

    August 3, 2010 at 3:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobojo

      There is always money being paid to someone in every industry. Just because you went to college worked hard and built highways doesn't mean you have a skill that's worth millions. The reason they are paid that much is because what they do is non-duplicatable. You want to make that much money? Do something no-one else can do quite the same way, that everyone is willing to pay you for. And pray for rain...

      August 3, 2010 at 4:31 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Daniel Troppy

    That's some serious cash.....

    August 3, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
  9. P-Ber

    Where r the black actress, R U trying to tell me that is not one on the list. Come on. And they say American has come along way!

    August 3, 2010 at 3:25 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Geri

    Something tells me, Sandra earned every penny. She worked for years to get to this point. I am happy for her and the others... I could use some of that money... maybe I need to work harder or change professions!

    August 3, 2010 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mbane

    Would you still like to donate $1.00 or sponsor a child? Nope! Let the rich do that. 56 million in one year for a role that took her 4 months of work? Hollywood is out of control. They came after the common folk for donations, for downloading a movie or a song and complain about lack of movie tickets. All while the same time sticking it our faces with their lavish lifestyles and their over the top fortunes.

    August 3, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sheryl

      Sounds to me like she made a good business deal. Took less salary for a piece of the gross and people are complaining because she made a good business deal? who cares how much she made. She is always the first to donate a million dollars to a major disaster without all of the hype of a telethon. I say good for her. The real problem is people who have absolutely no talent making major $$ for being drunk on a reality show.

      August 3, 2010 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Linda

    Bullock spent 10 years in Hollywood (and probably longer before that) not making money before she hit it big with Speed. She has earned her money. If you don't like it, then go struggle like all of those actors who spend money on classes, pictures, more classes and more pictures. You will then see how much it takes before anyone can make any money. (and that is if they are lucky)

    August 3, 2010 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Tony

    You are missing the point...
    We are not talking about working and making money...we are talking making millions for ...what ...for idiots like some of you that think that these people are gods. People get all crazy about them...because they don't have a life themselves and here we are....these actors and actresses making more that we need for all the homeless people for example to have houses.
    I just put there a thought....nothing to do with my political views....

    August 3, 2010 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Call the Waaaaaaaahmbulance

      You're not the first person to talk about how actors/athletes get overpaid for their services which you deem to be useless or overrated. You're also not the first idiot to say "What about the poor?" and instead of doing something about it you wander onto CNN's comment board. Cry more, please. I don't regard celebrities as any different from anyone else. They are all human beings... with a lot more money, but they're still human. I don't expect anything out of them other than good entertainment. As for their personal lives, I could care less. Once in a while it's fun to read into their lives, but that's just a time waster... but we do it anyway.

      Everyone makes a living doing something. You might find it pointless, but it all depends on the demand. People love to be entertained. Stop crying and do something about it. Going on CNN thinking you're righteous only makes you look like a real idiot.

      August 4, 2010 at 8:59 am | Report abuse |
  14. RL

    It's about time women actors made as much money as all the men....however, why does Jennifer Aniston make more than really really talented ones, like Meryl or Julia???? All you have to do is watch old reruns of her on TV for free.

    August 3, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. TP

    Remember the more these people make the more your movie popcorn ($6 for small) and ticket ($15) will cost. The movie distributors get a piece of the pie, but need to make enough to cover what they are paying these actors. If you cut these salaries in half,movie ticket will cost $8 and popcorn $3 and still the movie owners will make a profit.

    August 3, 2010 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  16. bl

    she's back with jesse

    August 3, 2010 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Zoozs

    ..With all the money in the world,these ladies still end up picking "losers" as male companions in their life.Well,perhaps
    its time for all these ladies to smarten up and start dating some smart nerds for a change.Have lots of babies and
    have "their will of fortune" to be distributed equally to their kids later on.Wealth concentrated on just one or two kids
    ususally gets drained quickly within one generation.

    August 3, 2010 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Tony

    I don't know, but in this economy, I don't really like it when I read things like that.
    People lose their homes and here we are talking about other people earning millions in one year.
    I just cannot be happy for them, sorry....

    August 3, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Call The Wahhhhhmbulance

      That's fine. Just stop reading these articles and commenting on them.

      August 3, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • mike

      so what you are saying is you dont like capitalism? you would rather everyones salary be controlled so no one gets their feelings hurt? you must be a liberal... you ought to be thrilled that the ability to make as much money as you can exists, its a freedom most countries do not have. most people that are losing their homes bought over their means, had no savings, and got an idiot loan.... as with everything now that too corrects itself. everyone thinks homes and cars and KIDS are a right... they are not, they are all a priviledge and if you don't have the ability to earn then you ought not go in debt....

      if you dont like reading these stories then complain to the website.... you sound like a whiny loser baby.

      August 3, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • spm

      That's too bad -she has a high paying job and worked for the money. If you want to make that kind of income find a different career. I make a decent living and watch my spending and plan for rainy days, why would another person knock someone else for being financially successefu?. I do not make anywhere near that but who would I be to judge her income?? I don't think you should either.

      August 3, 2010 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • hear it from me

      you're just a hypocrite!

      August 3, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • BILL


      August 3, 2010 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • dirkgambit

      There is a type of government where everybody earns the same thing. It is called communism.

      August 4, 2010 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  19. N


    August 3, 2010 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  20. KellyW.

    Kristen Stewart is the youngest one at age 20. I think Sandra deserved to be the number one earner. She had a rough year but she turned it around for good. I would have thought Meryl Streep earned more money. It seems like she did more films than the others, but maybe not. I have read that Kristen Stewart is earning $25 million and a percentage of the profit for the last two Twilight movies. That means she will probably be in the top five at age 21. That's really impressive when you look at other actresses her age that don't make near that much or are in rehab.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Leslie

      ...or have talent...

      August 3, 2010 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nicole

      Kristen has a lot of talent and she deserves at least that much for putting up with the Twicos. They pretty much stalk her and analyze her every move and touch with Pattinson. I like her indie work more.

      August 3, 2010 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • KKKKKatie

      What is really amazing is that Kristin Stewart made the list at all. Thank goodness she has the lead in the popular Twilight books because anyone would be popular in that role. I'm sure Kristin is a nice girl but she is no leading actress. She has the same bland expression in all her movies and isn't very interesting on screen. She is boring!!!

      August 3, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • nyugal

      So you say Katie. She was excellent in The Runaways. I didn't like her before but now I'm going back and watching some of her films. If Jennifer Anniston and Cameron Diaz can be leading ladies, anyone can.

      August 3, 2010 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • JL


      August 4, 2010 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |

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