George Clooney Is This Year's Highest Paid Actor — Thanks to Tequila
George Clooney received the biggest payday in Hollywood.
The Oscar-winning actor, 57, topped Forbes‘ annual ranking of Hollywood’s highest-paid actors with $239 million, surpassing Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson” who came in at No. 2.
A large portion of Clooney’s cash flow comes from selling his Casamigos Tequila company for $1 billion which occurred in June 2017.
“We never planned on starting a tequila company,” Clooney told Good Morning America of how he and business partners Rande Gerber and Mike Meldman sold the company. “You know, we made Casamigos just for us to drink. Once we did launch the company, we thought, ‘Hey, if we could sell a bottle or two, great. If not, at least we still get to drink our own tequila.”
He added, “So, four years later when we’re offered a billion dollars to sell the company, yeah, we were kind of shocked.”
Clooney also has endorsements such as Nespresso, a company he’s worked with as international spokesperson since 2005.
Johnson came in second place with an estimated $124 million, earning large sums of money from films such as Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and Skyscraper. (By comparison, Clooney, who is currently directing, producing and acting in Hulu’s upcoming series Catch-22, has largely shied away from big-budget action movie fare.)
His large social media following of 113 million followers has looped him to leverage deals as well, Forbes reported.
“Social media has become the most critical element of marketing a movie for me,” Johnson told the magazine. “I have established a social media equity with an audience around the world that there’s a value in what I’m delivering to them.”
Coming in third place is Robert Downey Jr. who earned $81 million, largely from his iconic role as Iron Man in Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War and Spider-Man: Homecoming.
His costar Chris Hemsworth made No. 4 on the list with $64.5 million largely in part to his leading role in Thor: Ragnarok.
Jackie Chan also made the list at No. 5 with $45.5 million, with Will Smith taking the sixth spot with $42 million.
Mark Wahlberg was the highest paid actor in 2017 with $68 million, according to Forbes.