Top Moneymakers Smith, Depp And DiCaprio

Here’s some news Will Smith can take to the bank, along with those eight-figure paychecks: The Hancock star is the top-paid actor in Hollywood, according to the latest figures from the number crunchers over at

Based on salaries earned between June 1, 2007, through June 1, 2008, Smith bested all competitors, male or female, raking in an estimated $80 million for his big-screen efforts.

His nearest moneymaking rival is Johnny Depp, whose pirate’s booty totaled $72 million.

Not bad for a year’s work.

Smith also got props for something more than his pay stubs—namely, his box-office pull.

In the wake of his latest Independence Day-dominating role, the blockbuster star has become the first actor to have eight straight movies earn more than $100 million at the box office. Hancock picked up where I Am Legend and The Pursuit of Happyness left off.

Smith’s megabucks earning power helped lead his male acting brethren to outearn their female counterparts nearly 2-to-1 over the past year. While the leading men took in an estimated $487 million over the past 12 months, the leading ladies earned half that, banking $244.5 million.

Tied for third place on the top-earning tier are funnymen Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy, who each raked in $55 million over the past year despite their recent respective box-office tank jobs, The Love Guru and Meet Dave.

Coming in the fourth spot is Leonardo DiCaprio, with $45 million, followed by Bruce Willis, whose resurrected John McClane helped him earn $41 million.

Ben Stiller is next with $40 million, despite having one of his worst performing films to date with last year’s The Heartbreak Kid. Nipping at his heels is the $38 million-making Nicolas Cage, thanks to the success of National Treasure: Book of Secrets.

A pair of funnymen round out Forbes’ list, with Will Ferrell banking $31 million and fellow Saturday Night Live alum Adam Sandler taking in a smooth $30 million.

On the women’s side, Cameron Diaz is the best compensated, taking home $50 million. Keira Knightley is next with $32 million, followed by Jennifer Aniston with $27 million.

The Forbes folks also rated which stars were the best bang for the buck, with Vince Vaughn leading the way. Vaughn earned $14.73 in gross income for studios for every dollar he was paid for The Break-Up, Wedding Crashers and Dodgeball.

“That’s because until recently his salary was relatively low, and the films he was in, like Wedding Crashers and The Break-Up, had modest budgets yet did extremely well at the box office worldwide ($285 million and $205 million, respectively),” the magazine said.

Rounding out the top 10: Tobey Maguire ($13.44); Julia Roberts ($13.19); Brad Pitt ($12.73), Naomi Watts and Matt Damon (tied at $12.16 each), George Clooney ($11.56), Jennifer Aniston ($10.48), Hugh Jackman ($9.90) and Ben Stiller ($9.50).

Will Smith ranked 21st, recouping $5.64 for ever dollar shelled out by the studios. Nicole Kidman brought up the rear, ranking 35th with just $1.01 for every dollar spent.


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