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Harry Potter author JK Rowling named one of the highest paid celebrities in 2017 – but who came top?

It was a great year for Rowling - but while ten male actors made the top 100, not a single female movie star is on the list

Published: Monday, 12th June 2017 at 1:57 pm

JK Rowling has been named as the third highest paid celebrity in 2017 on Forbes' annual list, raking in an estimated $95 million (£74.8m).


The top two earning celebrities according to the US publication are Sean 'Diddy' Combs ($130 million) and Beyonce ($105 million).

Rowling came in third following the release of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child and the first Fantastic Beasts film, with rapper Drake and footballer Cristiano Ronaldo placing fourth and fifth place respectively.


Rowling returns to the top 100 rich list after a three year hiatus, earning her largest reported pay since 2008’s $300 million haul. This year's estimated $95 million pay cheque comes from Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and profits from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Together, the world’s 100 highest-paid celebrities banked a whopping $5.15 billion before tax during Forbes' June 2016 to June 2017 assessing period.

The UK claims 12 entries out of the 100 entries this year. While there are ten male actors on the ranking, not a single female movie star made the cut. Although Beyoncé and Rowling ranked second and third, women comprise just 16 per cent of the world’s top-earning celebrities, "an imbalance that reflects the gender pay gap across industries" according to Forbes.

Other TV and film industry celebrities who made the list include Adam Sandler (No. 35, $50.5 million), Jackie Chan (No. 39, $49 million), Ellen DeGeneres (No. 59, $77 million) and Amy Schumer (No. 69; $37.5 million).

Comedians such as Dave Chappelle and Chris Rock are taking home an estimated $20 million apiece for their Netflix specials. Forbes senior editor Zac O'Malley Greenburg said, "Streaming platforms from Spotify to Netflix are finally creating meaningful income for entertainers, something that seemed a distant dream only a few years ago."


Taylor Swift, the top earner in 2016, dropped to No. 49 on the list this year.


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