It pays to be in reality television as Essex-born producer Mark Burnett has discovered after amassing a combined fortune with his wife, actress Roma Downey, of £295 million. The pair have topped The Sunday Times Rich List 2013 of Britain’s richest movie couples, following Hollywood producer Burnett’s work on reality shows The Apprentice, Survivor and The Voice. Add to that the recent £13 million mini-series The Bible, plus the sale of a 50% stake in Mark Burnett Productions to Hearst and you have Hollywood’s wealthiest power couple
Burnett’s fortune is so great that he is over £100 million ahead of number two-placed Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas, who between them are worth £185 million. Both bonafide Hollywood movie stars, between them the couple’s films have grossed around £3.2 billion – although Douglas’s personal fortune has the edge at £115 million, compared to his wife’s £70 million.
Coming in third on the list are hedge fund businessman Arpad Busson and his movie star spouse, Uma Thurman. Although Busson’s assets are reported to have shrunk over the past year (pah!), he and his wife can rest easy as their combined wealth still rests at a healthy £145 million.
Coldplay frontman Chris Martin and his Hollywood A-list other half Gwyneth Paltrow placed fourth, with a robust £60 million, including homes in London, New York, the Hamptons and, most recently, Los Angeles. Martin has his Coldplay fame to thank for his hefty £50 million paypacket, while Paltrow’s appearance in 42 films, plus her advertising deals has netted her £40 million.
Partners Tim Burton and Helena Bonham Carter complete the top five with their respective work as director and actress. The pair live together in their London home, with Bonham Carter’s 50 films garnering a box office-busting £5.4 billion.
Other notable appearances in the top ten are new entrants British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen and his wife Isla Fisher in seventh place, and James Bond actors Sir Roger Moore (with Kristina Tholstrup) and Daniel Craig (along with wife Rachel Weisz) in ninth and tenth position respectively. Check out the full top ten below:
1. Mark Burnett and Roma Downey
2. Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas
3. Arpad Busson and Uma Thurman
Hedge fund and films
4. Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow
Music and films
5. Tim Burton and Helena Bonham Carter
6. Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas
7. Sacha Baron Cohen and Isla Fisher
8. Matthew Vaughn and Claudia Schiffer
Films and modelling
9. Sir Roger Moore and Kristina Tholstrup
10. Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz
The full 25th annual Sunday Times Rich List is published on 21 April in a special 104-page supplement