It’s quite obvious how African American actors have taken a prominent place in mainstream Hollywood movies over the recent decade. Quality films with meaty-roles are now casted to African American actors that have proven to draw hordes of fans to the box-office.
Gone are the 50’s and 60’s era when motion pictures where limited to ‘whites only’. Today, some of the highest paid actors making blockbuster hit films are African Americans.
Talk about movies like Training Day and Monster’s Ball that won both Denzel Washington and Halle Berry Oscars in 2002. How about Will Smith’s Men in Black and Training Day; Samuel L. Jackson’s Pulp Fiction, Morgan Freeman’s Million Dollar Baby, and Oscar-winning Jennifer Hudson’s Dreamgirls—all top grossing Black films. And the list can go on and on from movie actors, to top producers, and film directors.
With their incredible talent it’s not hard to understand why these African American actors are receiving so much love from movie fans all over the world and raking in big bucks from movie theaters.
Here’s a list of some of the highest paid and consequently richest African American actors in Hollywood today based on the net worth from Celebrity Net Worth, Forbes and other sources. Tyler Perry, who’s the richest African American in Hollywood with an estimated net worth of $350 million, didn’t feature in our list mainly because he is more of a producer and director. Let’s see who made the list.
1. Will Smith
Estimated net worth: $215 Million
Mention ‘Will Smith’ and movies like Men in Black and Hancock will immediately come to mind. Incidentally, Will pocketed a whopping $20 million talent fee for the latest installment of the hit Men in Black III, and around the same amount for the 2008 superhero film Hancock.
Will’s acting career began in a 90’s TV sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. But his career kicked-off after hit action movies Bad Boys and Independence Day, with the latter earning revenues of more than $800 million. Will also took home Grammy Awards for his rap music, and produced several films including Seven Pounds and I am Legend.
Born to humble parents working as a school admin and refrigerator engineer, Will has come a long way with all the success he has earned. With his millions, Will can practically buy his mom her own school!
2= Samuel L. Jackson
Estimated net worth: $150 Million
Samuel’s most recent box-office appearance were for the Marvel hit flicks Iron Man and Avengers, where he is said to have signed a contract for movie appearances in some nine other Marvel-related comic book movies… hello big bucks! Reports say he earns around $10 million each year.
With no interest in acting, Samuel was active in black student movements for civil rights in his younger years. It was only when he met actor Morgan Freeman that he was mentored in film and acting. His first movie was 1981’s Jungle Fever. Some of his important roles were in the movies Goodfellas, Pulp Fiction where he received an Oscar nominee, and Die Hard III.
Samuel remains a staunch advocate of civil rights especially for African American groups.
2= Denzel Washington
Estimated net worth: $150 Million
Denzel’s striking good looks and amazing acting skills are definitely paying off by the millions. Born and raised in New York, Denzel began his acting career in theater and slowly moved to made-for-TV-movies where he landed a role in St. Elsewhere and stayed with the TV show until its final season six years after. Around the same year, he received his first Oscar nomination for the film Cry Freedom, and the following year won Best Supporting Actor for his amazing performance in the film Glory.
Denzel is the second African American actor who ever won a Best Actor Oscar; he won for the movie Training Day. Denzel is an actor, scriptwriter, producer, and director with an annual pay of around $40 million. Now, that explains his $150 million net worth.
4. Martin Lawrence…
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