This is a male-dominated film industry with the actors getting a bigger share in the pie. However, one should also admit that the actors carry the films on their shoulders. They are the ones who bring in the audiences to the cinema theaters. Of course, they can emote as well. You have some of the finest actors in this list. Naturally, this is a Hollywood dominated list for the simple reason that the films made in Hollywood are on a different league altogether. However, the Indian film industry, Bollywood has started to make its presence felt with two nominees in the Top 10 list, one of whom is an all-time legend.
We shall look at the top 10 highest paid actors in the industry. This list can include the Top 10 alone. Hence, some of the finest actors such as Mark Wahlberg might have just missed the bus. However, one must admit that the Top 10 highest paid actors are equally highly popular as well at the same time.
10. Shahrukh Khan: $33 million
We have the Badshah of Bollywood, Shahrukh Khan at No. 10 in this list. One of the most romantic heroes to have ever graced the silver screen, Shahrukh Khan can make the women swoon with a mere wink. One of the few Indian actors who can perform the role of the villain with an equal degree of comfort, Shahrukh Khan is a known face all over the world because of the presence of the Indian diaspora. His films always do well in the US as well. A spate of endorsements has pushed up his earnings to $33 million.
09. Amitabh Bachchan: $33.5 million
If the No. 10 spot belongs to the Badshah, the No. 9 goes to the Big B, Amitabh Bachchan. On the film scene since 1969, Amitabh Bachchan is on the verge of a half-century in the film industry. The greatest aspect of his innings is that he has ruled the Indian cinema scene since the 1970s until date. Even today, he can give the young upstarts a run for their money. A tall actor, he towers over everyone in the list. Bit for the fact that the Indian films do not have much of an audience in Hollywood, he would have topped the list quite easily. He was on the verge of bankruptcy at one time, but the quiz show, the Indian version of ‘Who wants to be a millionaire” (Kaun Banega Crorepati) saved him the blushes. With earnings in the range of $33.5 million, he is No. 9 on this list.
08. Leonardo Di Caprio: $39 million
The Titanic star has just won the Academy Award after years of bagging numerous nominations. At No. 8, we have one of the most intense looking actors, Leonardo Di Caprio. He had very humble beginnings as an actor before hitting big time with Romeo + Juliet and Titanic. The audience appreciated his roles in the film, The Departed and Inception as well. He won the Academy Award for his role in the film, The Revenant in 2016. With earnings in the range of $39 million, Leonardo is at No. 8 in the list.
07. Tom Cruise: $40 million
Sometimes, providence does play a great part in life. Otherwise, we would not have had seen the versatile acting of Tom Cruise, the actor at No. 7 in our list. Tom Cruise wanted to join priesthood but ended up scorching the screens on fire with his tremendous roles in the Mission impossible series. He has had a long career in films as well, having been on the scene since the 1980’s. With earnings in the bracket of $40 million, he seals the No. 7 spot comfortably.
06. Vin Diesel: $47 million
Providence plays a great part here as well. We saw Tom Cruise very nearly become a priest. Here, we have a bouncer becoming one of the top actors of the century. At No. 6 we have Vin Diesel, a colourful personality by his own admission. Once a bouncer in one of the night clubs of New York, Vin Diesel (Mark Sinclair) has acted in some memorable films such as the Fast and Furious series. This action hero has impressed all with his well-toned physique. As of today, his earnings is in the range of $47 million.
05. Johnny Depp: $48 million
At No. 5, we have Captain Jack Sparrow, Johnny Depp. One of the most versatile actors in the Hollywood film industry, Depp had a providential entry into the film industry. He was a ball-point pen salesman. He met Nicolas Cage in California who suggested that Depp should take to acting. His first film was The Nightmare on Elm Street. However, his main rise to fame is because of the portrayal of Capt Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean Series. Earning a cool $48 million, Johnny Depp is a worthy No. 5 on this list.
04. Matt Damon: $55 million
One can call Matt Damon a trained actor. Unlike the previous three actors in this list, Matt Damon came to Hollywood for only one reason. He wanted to become a successful actor. He writes screenplays as well with one of his films, Good Will Hunting fetching him the Academy Award. He performed creditable roles in the Ocean 11,12, and 13 along with George Clooney, Julia Roberts, and Brad Pitt. His role in The Departed was an appreciable one as well. With earnings in the range of $55 million, Matt Damon is our No. 4 on this list of the Top 10 highest paid actors today.
03. Jackie Chan: $55 million
We have Jackie Chan from Hong Kong at the No. 3 spot. A very successful martial arts presenter, people consider him as a replacement to the irrepressible Bruce Lee. However, Jackie Chan is a master at comedy as well quite unlike Bruce Lee. He usually acts in the martial arts films. However, he has made a mark with some successful commercial films such as the Police Story series. These films helped him move out of the shadow of Bruce Lee and established Jackie Chan as a successful actor in Hollywood. With earnings in the range of $55 million, Jackie Chan is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador as well.
02. Robert Downey Junior: $62 million
We have the Iron man, Robert Downey Jr. at the No. 2 position. Born to parents who were legends in the film industry, it was but natural that Robert Jr. would also make a mark in films. He entered the field very early as a child artiste. During his four decades in the industry, he has performed various memorable roles, such as that of Sherlock Holmes, The Iron Man, and the Avengers series. Reportedly earning $62 million, he is the No. 2 on this exalted list.
01. Dwayne The Rock Johnson: $65 million
At No. 1 we have, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson of WWE fame. He is a versatile actor and a professional wrestler as well. One of the most successful entertainers in the WWE, he is a powerful actor as well having played some excellent roles in The Scorpion King, The Fast and Furious series, etc. One of the most handsome personalities to grace the screen, he is the tallest person in this list (by height) followed closely by the Big B, Amitabh Bachchan. A former NFL player to boot, The Rock earns around $65 million in films, endorsements, and the WWE making him the highest paid actor in the industry today.
We have had some excellent entertainers in this list with Amitabh Bachchan being a personal favorite. Each of these actors has given towering performances in their careers. They richly deserve the earnings listed against their names. They are the persons primarily responsible for the films raking in the billions in recent times.