Hollywood: Highest Paid Actors–Size of Blockbuster, Special Effects, Social Media–All Matter

In the 1990s, stars likes Julia Roberts, Will Smith, Tom Hanks, and Jim Carrey commanded salaries of $20 million for every film they made, plus profit participation  But those days are gone, and the number of actors who get pay packages on that order is dwindling.

Superheroes and Star Wars movies are the big attraction at movie theaters. The film’s opening weekend no longer depends on the popularity of its actors.  Special effects are the stars on which the studios spend their big money.

A few actors, such as Dwayne Johnson, Vin Diesel and Robert Downey Jr., can still receive north of $20 million for a big movie, but for only major franchise installments,

Downey’s performance as Iron Man is so profitable that he makes a fortune even for cameo appearances. The actor picked up $10 million 15 minutes of screen time in “Spider-Man: Homecoming.” Appearing in Iron Man adventure will get him twice that amount.

Vin Diesel made the first “Fast and Furious” back in 2000, at a time when no one envisioned the movie to become an eight-part, multibillion-dollar franchise. That’s enabled Diesel to drive richer and richer deals as the film series has continued, including securing a producer credit. Diesel received more than $20 million for the 2017’s “The Fate of the Furious.”

Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Pratt scored big raises for the sequel to “Jurassic World” after the first film dominated the box office.

Patty Jenkins, the director of the sequel to “Wonder Woman” will get $9 million, more than triple what she made on the first film.

Sometimes stars don’t have to wait for films to open in order to get paid.  Actors like Tom Cruise or a Brad Pitt can demand their bonuses up front, before shooting has wrapped or film released.

Use of Stars Social Media

Other ways to make big money: Access to  stars like Scarlett Johnson’s 104 million Instagram followers?

Johnson, the “Rampage” star, is getting $1 million social-media fee as part of his package for “Red Notice,” which includes promoting the film on Twitter and Facebook.

A sampling of paydays for some of Hollywood’s best-paid actors
Daniel Craig “Bond 25” (2019) $25M
Dwayne Johnson “Red Notice” (2020) $22M
Vin Diesel “The Fate of the Furious” (2017) $20M
Anne Hathaway “Barbie” (2020) $15M
Jennifer Lawrence “Red Sparrow” (2018) $15M
Seth Rogen “Flarsky” (2019) $15M
Tom Cruise “The Mummy” (2017) $11-$13M
Harisson Ford “Indiana Jones 5” (2020) $10-$12M

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