Reynolds heads list of top Hollywood earners

with wife, actress Blake Lively, is No. 1 on a list of top earners compiled by trade publication Variety. He was paid US$27 million (S$37 million) to star in Six Underground.
Actor Ryan Reynolds, with wife, actress Blake Lively, is No. 1 on a list of top earners compiled by trade publication Variety. He was paid US$27 million (S$37 million) to star in Six Underground.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

NEW YORK • Justice does not come cheap. Ryan Reynolds is getting US$27 million (S$37 million) to star in Six Underground, a film about a billionaire-financed vigilante squad.

His reward heads a list of top earners compiled by trade publication Variety. He is benefiting from a push by Netflix - which is bankrolling Six Underground - to pay top dollar for original content.

Pundits say while his deal seems lucrative, it is a fixed reward. He will not share in the film's revenue, from streaming to product tie-ups. Hollywood studio contracts normally allow A-listers to get a percentage of the movie's profits, beyond what they are paid initially.

The industry, hit by demands for an end to the gender pay gap, is playing catch-up. Take, for example, the case of Gal Gadot who reportedly bagged just US$300,000 for her work in box-office hit Wonder Woman (2017). She will see her pay take a superheroic leap to US$10 million to star in Wonder Woman 1984.

But big names are willing to accept less to work with a favoured director or in a project that points to possible Oscar recognition. Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt are taking home US$10 million each - half of their asking prices - to stretch their acting chops in Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.

Here is the pay list:

1. Ryan Reynolds (Six Underground): US$27 million
2. Dwayne Johnson (Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw): US$20 million
3. Robert Downey Jr (The Voyage Of Doctor Dolittle): US$20 million
4. Will Smith (Bad Boys For Life): US$17 million
5. Jason Statham (Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw): US$13 million
6. Tom Cruise (Top Gun: Maverick): US$12 million to US$14 million
7. Emily Blunt (A Quiet Place 2): US$12 million to US$13 million
8. Brad Pitt (Once Upon A Time In Hollywood): US$10 million
9. Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman 1984): US$10 million
​10. Leonardo DiCaprio (Once Upon A Time In Hollywood): US$10 million

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 04, 2019, with the headline 'Reynolds heads list of top Hollywood earners'. Print Edition | Subscribe