Back in the 90s, all Julia Roberts had to do was fart on camera (or just do Mona Lisa Smile…same difference), and a production studio would fork over $20 million. These days, Hollywood is pinching pennies, realizing audiences care more about the CGI than who is starring in a flick. Why pay for Meryl Streep when you can just hire one of those Westworld robots? It doesn’t mean you’re going to see The Rock and other actors in line at the soup kitchen…it just means they’re paid differently (aka back-end deals). Or, if you’re him, you just say you won’t Tweet about the movie you have opening on Friday unless the studio forks over a cool million dollars.
Variety put together a sample list of what some stars are making per movie:
Daniel Craig – $25 million for Bond 25
The Rock – $22 million for Red Notice
Vin Diesel – $20 million for The Fate and the Furious
Anne Hathaway – $15 million for Barbie
Jennifer Lawrence – $15 million for Red Sparrow
Seth Rogen – $15 million for Flarsky
Tom Cruise – $11 to $13 million for The Mummy
Harrison Ford – $10 to $12 million for Indiana Jones 5
Sandra Bullock – $10 million for Minions
Leonardo DiCaprio – $10 million for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
The Rock’s payday from Red Notice includes a $1 million social media fee to promote the film on Twitter and Facebook.
Some stars are having to get creative to get a paycheck, like agreeing to be paid at scale for a low-budget film and wait to get paid from the box office receipts. Ethan Hawke did this while filming The Purge in 2013 and then nabbed a $2 million bonus when the thing raked in more than $89 million at the box office. But some studios are getting stingier with deals like that and try to keep the profits to themselves…unless it turns into an unexpected franchise, like the 900 Fast and Furious movies. Robert Downey Jr. is so popular as Iron Man that they paid him $10 million for 15 minutes of screen time Spider Man: Homecoming.
Not all celebrities demand millions for just a few minutes of work. The reporter must really like Leonardo DiCaprio because he’s portrayed as the saint of the backlot for going from a $20 million salary during Inception to half that to star in Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming Charles Manson biopic, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. Leo is still being greedy. Burt Reynolds just agreed to be in that movie, and I’d work for free just to stand next to Burt and that fur rug he has that masquerades as chest hair!