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Who is the Highest Paid TV Actor?

Posted: August 11th, 2009 by WorstPreviews.com Staff
Who is the Highest Paid TV Actor?Submit Comment
According to TV Guide magazine, "24" actor Kiefer Sutherland is America's highest paid TV actor, earning $550,000 per episode and almost $13 million per season.

Second on the list is "House" star Hugh Laurie, who commands $400,000 for each episode of the medical drama.

Behind them, "Desperate Housewives" stars Eva Longoria Parker, Marcia Cross, Felicity Huffman and Teri Hatcher each earn $395,000 for each episode of their show.

And the overall highest earner in television is Charlie Sheen, the star and co-producer of the hit show "Two and a Half Men," who makes $860,000 per episode.

Source: TV Guide


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Displaying 45 comment(s) Profanity: Turn On
RickyGabrielBird writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:01:59 AM

Damn he fell a long way from Platoon.
RickyGabrielBird writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:03:08 AM

Then again he did get Denise Richards...
minkowski writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:14:36 AM

Go Kiefer!

And Sheen is making nearly a mil per episode? f*ck, that dude is making more off TV than he did off films! Congrats Mr I Got To Bang Kristy Swanson!
rjd040487 writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:38:38 AM

doesnt sutherland co-produce 24 as well?
minkowski writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:42:34 AM

I believe so, yes.
The Skippy Spartan writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 7:26:12 AM

Yeah Kiefer co produces, more cash on his behalf..Can't wait for more of Bauer killing bad guys and saving the day and getting crapped on by the government, i jsu thope they don't kill off his daughter, Agent Peirce or Chloe O Brian, i live those characters!
defiant1 writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 7:29:23 AM

Quite a step up from The Wraith.
Kid_A writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 7:36:41 AM

Agree with Mink; not only Charlie Sheen, but so many actors earn from TV more than movies, because a movie comes in 9 months at least (12 months needed for a goo quality movie) and an actor/actress earns like 5-8 million dollars (more than 10 if the person is popular). But for TV, it turns out to be payments. I hope I could tell correct what I wanted to. :D
Kid_A writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 7:52:30 AM

By the way, is this article about the highest earning of the current time, or the overall time? Because the pic is Charlie Sheen's, however the highest paid is said to be Kiefer. Charlie is just an 'overall'. Should we consider Charlie or Kiefer as the highest paid? Or Charlie's 860.000 dollar earning is the sum of both acting and co-producing? Because that could mean he earns less as an actor than Kiefer, but his co-producer situation makes it higher than Kiefer's.
Agent Calavera writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 8:47:08 AM

Go on Hugh!
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 8:51:05 AM

Its good to see the old Young Guns still making bank. Keifer and Charlie do pretty well in the endorcement scene too. Sheen has been doing Hanes coms for almost 10 years now and Keifer's voice will probably be bankable for the rest of his life. Even Emilio is a pretty decent director now (see Bobby if you haven't). Whatever happened Chavez though? Where are you Lou Diamond Phillips?
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 8:53:27 AM

The Brat Pack still banks baby! Don't forget Robert Downey Jr. is still representing too!
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 11:16:50 AM

I knew this of Charlie's (Carlos - his real first name) income. Good on him. And I remember when Keifer signed his multi-year deal... HUGE $'s. But that's the thing... these production co's have to pay these guys as well as (if not better than) movies. The history has always been... get popular in TV... move to film (look at Clooney for only ONE example). @$860K for each of the 22 episodes, PLUS part Ownership of the show... Charlie don't have to bust his ass 'off season' looking for a movie gig if he doesn't want to (I wouldn't...). Good for these guys. But as per usual, no overnight successes here. Even Jim Carrey was kicking around Hollyweird for 20 years before making the really huge cash (find a short-live show called 'The Duck Factory' starring Jim. Again... Hollywood mis-cast, and didn't utilize his talents until the Wayans got him into In Living Color. I swear Hollywood sabotages themselves).
Barney Stinson writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 11:19:43 AM

Jack Bauer is the f*cking man! Go Kiefer!

I think the highest paid ever might have been Friends, where in the last season they all got paid a $1 mil per episode.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 11:37:06 AM

Keifer (if he IS co-producing) and Hugh Laurie with their dramatic 1 HOUR shows are getting boned when compared to Charlie's deal.

@Barney: clearly this is a list of current salaries. Friends is a good call. Ray Romano was way up there as well. As for Frazier. Even Niles was $1.2 or $1.4mil per show (something like that) with Kelsey making a LOT more. So this has to be a current list.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 11:42:59 AM

Nice to see Carlos' education of going across the border to nail whores in Mexico wasn't wasted on his character's development in 2.5 Men.
KROQ writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 1:02:52 PM

only Hugh Laurie and Kiefer Sutherland's salaries are justified... all I'm saying
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 1:07:09 PM

And Charlie's... by comparison?
Barney Stinson writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:06:40 PM

@Ranger - Yeah I know this is the current salaries list. I was just thinking out loud about who probably got paid the most per episode in television history, who I thought was the Friend's cast.

On that note, I believe Oprah gets paid more than 200 mil a year, which I think is just ridiculous.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:07:00 PM

I see Hollywood is boning the immigrants again (except Jackman... but he's WOLVERINE!).

Hugh makes $400K for an hour show whilst Charlie makes more than twice that for a half hour show (yeah, I know... Chuck co-produces), thus effectively paying Laurie 1/4 the dough Chuck makes. Same as import Sutherland (ahh... ALSO a 'co-producer'... hello!) making just more than half the $'s Carlos makes!

As for Desperate Housewives (which ones aren't?) - make ONLY $5K a show less than Hugh, and he has a MUCH tougher script! Monkeys could do Desperate Housewives (note my clever use of the double entendre - yeah, I'm brighter than I look (thank God!))

Sutherland, Laurie, 2 words for you both:

Jewish Agent! (can't wait to hear the slams for that crack!)
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:08:12 PM

@Barney - yeah... Orca is raking it in. But she produces. That's where the cash is. She owns Dr. Phil's self-righteous ass too. She has her chubby fingers into a lot of pies. Smart lady!
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:11:10 PM

@Barney... think out loud all you want Bro. That's what makes this site sing!

As for $'s... Ray Romano, Seinfeld, and Frazer... huge cash!

But even 100 years ago, Carrol O'Connor was making $100K per show for All in the Family, and that WAS BIG Cash... back then (still is). Then Ted Danson... huge for his time.

I can't complain about any of these salaries. I'd take anyone of them were they offered to me. So did these people. Great on them for their successes.
vip3r22 writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:11:52 PM

@SACdaddy

he's too busy being stuck on an island with with other failed 'reality' stars.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:11:54 PM

PS: Cameron Douglas is going to get soooo ass-raped! Ahhh... the sweet taint (snicker) of Justice!
SpookyCupcakes writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:26:34 PM

Do they really deserve all this money?
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:29:10 PM

Yes. Because someone is paying them that money Spooky. That's what determines a person's pay. What can they get the employee for.
Horsemoney5 writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:37:11 PM

Surprised not to See Larry David...
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:43:18 PM

Larry made most of his $ writing and creating... not so much for being in front of the camera (which this list appears to be).
padfootbob writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:44:15 PM

Bryan Cranston is the best actor on TV right now. Coincidently Breaking bad is the best show on TV too.
The_Joker writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 2:55:21 PM

Wow never knew it could be him....although he is funny:P
ian_918 writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 4:10:06 PM

thats to much money but idc cause its a good show haha
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 4:13:02 PM

I don't know guys. The top film actors are making way more than these guys and doing a fraction of the work. Angelina Jolie only needs to make one film to eclipse what these guys make in a year and it only takes her 3 months to do it. Actors like Depp ($72mill last year), Smith ($80mill acting and producing in 09), and Pitt ($20mill in 09) blow these TV stars away. What's even crazier is how much ex-TV stars are still making off syndication residules. Jerry is still raking in over $50mill a year from Seinfeld and Aniston is still bankin around $27 mill from Friends. Check out the Forbes 100 Most Powerful Celebrities to see some real "Amigo Money".
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 4:27:28 PM

Wow, Charlie Sheen ranks 85th on the list (Forbes 100) bringing in a total of $20mill and Kiefer isn't even on the list. I thought Kiefer's producing statis on 24 made him a major player. Guess it wasn't as lucrative as I thought.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 4:47:57 PM

@SAC - Good point. But TV does pay them well for their time. Not like there's been a huge demand for Charlie on the big screen. And that Forbes Power List - is based on power... not income. Obama made it high in the list for his $2.5mil. And Angelina at #1 (more reason for Aniston to bitch to her friends!) was no-where near the highest paid.

I think we can all agree though that everyone in this article and on the Forbes ist are well paid.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 4:48:34 PM

Ahh... 'ist' = 'list' (need more heroine baby... give it to me... shake, shake... shake!)
SACdaddy writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:26:23 PM

I'm just always impressed with that Seinfeld Friends money. Those were probably career making deals for those actors' agents.
Rich k writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 6:45:26 PM

i guess the tv show is alright for him, but he has to get out of those f*cking hanes commercials. I think he needs to do more movies.
Ranger writes:
on August 11th, 2009 at 7:36:31 PM

You mean... like... today?!
Trasherke writes:
on August 12th, 2009 at 1:53:20 AM

After Lohan en Coleman, Sheen would be an upgrade for you Ranger ;)
Ranger writes:
on August 12th, 2009 at 1:55:29 AM

WHAT ARE YOU SAYI....ok.... I'll give you that one.
JRprime writes:
on August 12th, 2009 at 2:30:32 PM

2 and a half men is such a great show
Trasherke writes:
on August 13th, 2009 at 2:22:43 AM

2 and a half men ... and no Ranger joke about Coleman ... Are you feeling ok buddy?
Ranger writes:
on August 13th, 2009 at 1:55:40 PM

No... but if the show was called: 2 Men and 1/4 of a washed-up, suicidal, mall cop! - Coleman would be a shoe-in (but a really tiny shoe)!
Blade12322 writes:
on August 18th, 2009 at 2:41:59 PM

2 words:

Criminal
Minds

enough said
Blade12322 writes:
on August 18th, 2009 at 2:42:49 PM

btw ranger if u like making fun of Coleman you should watch Whose Line is it Anyway
they do it all the time haha

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