For an actor, winning an Academy Award may be the pinnacle of a career. But when the ceremonies are over, Hollywood judges performers by a different standard: box office numbers. And you can bet that producers and production companies keep close track of which actors have the best track records when it comes to selling tickets.
24/7 Tempo has compiled a list of the actors whose films have made the most money over the years. As the results show, it’s definitely a man’s world. The top 14 slots go to men. The top-rated woman, Cameron Diaz, cracks the list at No. 15 — but she hasn’t made a major film since she played Hannigan in 2014’s “Annie.” The highest grossing of her 29 movies is “Shrek 2,” which brought in $441.2 million. These are the top 50 grossing movies of all time.
The next woman on the list is Emma Watson at No.17. The biggest moneymaker of her 16 films is 2017’s “Beauty and the Beast,” which tallied $504.0 million. She also built her box office success on the “Harry Potter” franchise.
The men who made the top 10 on the list have each had starring roles thus far in at least 23 movies and brought in at least $3.5 billion each to date. These are the most bankable actors of the 21st century.
To determine the actors that made Hollywood the most money, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data on domestic box office from IMDb, an online movie database owned by Amazon; Rotten Tomatoes, an online movie and TV review aggregator; and The Numbers, an online movie database owned by consulting firm Nash Information Services. Domestic box office was tallied for each actor across all of the movies in which they had a starring role. Only films for which an actor was listed among the top four stars of the movie on IMDb were included in each actor’s tally. Data was collected mid-March 2021.