Movie Stars: Bullock, Sandra–Did She Really Make $51 Million from Gravity

Though she didn’t take home the best actress statuette at the Academy Awards, Gravity has rocketed star Sandra Bullock to the top of Forbes’ list of highest earning actresses, with a lofty $51 million in earnings.

Despite the odds against the film, which features Bullock floating solo in space for nearly the entire 90-minute runtime, “Gravity” landed as one of the highest-grossing movies of 2013, bringing in $716 billion at the global box office.

“The Hunger Games’” Jennifer Lawrence lands in second on the list with $34 million, even though Forbes says she earned less than $1 million upfront for the first movie in the franchise.  Due to the film’s success, the actress is now in a position for greater profit on the future films, as well as a backend share.

Jennifer Aniston pulls in with $31 million, thanks to continuing “Friends” earnings as well as her endorsement work for Aveeno and other products.  Her preference to forego upfront pay for smaller-budget films like “We’re The Millers” in exchange for part of the profit also helps bolster her earnings. Aniston is also set to appear in “Horrible Bosses 2″ in November.

Though her earnings don’t come near co-star Robert Downey Jr.’s, Gwyneth Paltrow’s work in “Iron Man 3″ last year helped her land in the fourth spot on the list. Paltrow also earns for endorsing Max Factor makeup and Hugo Boss.

Last year’s top earning actress, Angelina Jolie ties for fifth place on the list with Cameron Diaz.  Each actress earned an estimated $18 million.  Jolie earned less for the latest list as Forbes only credited her upfront payment for Disney’s “Maleficent.”  Her profit earnings for the film, which has earned more than $700 million so far, will be included next year.

Despite these ladies’ successes, women are still earning less than men in Hollywood.  According to Forbes the top ten actresses brought in $226 million, just a little over half of the actors’ combined $419 million.

Forbes consults with agents, producers, lawywers and other figures in the entertainment industry to calculate the actresses’ earnings between June 2013 and June 2014.

The complete top 10:

1. Sandra Bullock – $51 million
2. Jennifer Lawrence – $34 million
3. Jennifer Aniston – $31 million
4. Gwyneth Paltrow – $19 million
5. Angelina Jolie – $18 million
6. Cameron Diaz – $18 million
7. Scarlett Johansson – $17 million
8. Amy Adams – $13 million
9. Natalie Portman – $13 million
10. Kristen Stewart – $12 million