Jennifer Lawrence Is Once Again the Highest Paid Actress in the World, But Melissa McCarthy Is #2

Image via Getty.
Image via Getty.

Jennifer Lawrence made $52 million in 2015. That number is slightly down this year, but she’s still leaving most leading woman actors in the dust.


For 2016, Lawrence’s estimated pretax income is $46 million, which is about 11.5 percent less, but nothing to shake your fist at. Forbes reports that Lawrence’s financial figures can be attributed to the boost from her final Hunger Games performance, and a big check for an upcoming film. But Melissa McCarthy is also creeping up there, in the number two slot with $33 million:

Lawrence’s impressive earnings consist largely of a profit slice from the big box office gross ($653.4 million) of her final Hunger Games installment and a mammoth upfront fee for the forthcoming Passengers...

McCarthy, 45, is this year’s biggest dollar gainer year over year; her earnings are up $10 million on 2015′s estimate thanks in part to a reported eight-figure payday for Ghostbusters. This year, the Mike & Molly star recorded her biggest annual paycheck to date, out-earning Scarlett Johansson (No. 3, $25 million).

Forbes list of highest paid woman actors also includes international stars like China’s Fan Bingbing and India’s Deepika Padukone, and the results include endorsements in addition to film roles. Jennifer Aniston is Number 4 after earning $21 million for her acting and work for Emirates airlines, Smartwater, Aveeno and Living Proof.

The earnings for men will be published on Thursday, but Forbes stops to reflect on the opportunities available to women in the industry. They mention international box offices, but they don’t dwell on race or the overwhelming whiteness of their top ten, though there is some reflection on ageism and the odd way it affects the ranking:

Half of the list are over 40; at 26, Lawrence is the youngest listmember and the only one under 30. The older members of the list have succeeded in spite of a lack of roles: just 35% of characters onscreen are over 40 and women fill just 21.4% of those roles.

This year evidently saw Sandra Bullock, Angelina Jolie, Kristen Stewart, Reese Witherspoon and Cameron Diaz all drop off; additionally, names like Kristen Wiig, Renée Zellweger and Cate Blanchett almost missed the $10 million mark.

Contributing Writer, writing my first book for the Dial Press called The Lonely Hunter, follow me on Twitter @alutkin



Unpopular opinion: Jennifer Lawrence is unbelievably overrated.