Kerry Washington Still the Only Black Woman on TV’s Highest-Paid Actresses List

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The annual list of TV’s 10 highest-paid actresses has been unveiled by Forbes magazine, and for the fifth year in a row, Kerry Washington is the only Black woman included on the list.

The former “Scandal” star took home $11 million for her role on the hit ABC show, which ended after seven seasons in May. That’s far below the earnings of fellow ABC star Ellen Pompeo, who took home $23.5 million for her work on the long-running “Grey’s Anatomy,” and “Modern Family” star Sofia Vergara, who earned $42.5 million and landed in the top spot. Pompeo’s earnings placed her at No. 3 behind No. 2’s Kaley Cuoco, who earned $24.5 million on CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory.”

The earnings were calculated from June 2017 to June 2018.

Kerry Washington
Kerry Washington attends the 72nd Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 10, 2018, in New York. (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

Washington’s place in the list marks the fifth year in a row where she is the only Black actress to appear on the list.

Even still, she managed to earn more than “Homeland” star Claire Danes, who took home $9 million, and former “NCIS” star Pauley Perrette, who earned $8.5 million. The two actresses placed ninth and tenth, respectively.

Washington’s remaining the sole Black face on the list highlights the lack of pay equality among Black TV stars. Not even Viola Davis, current star of ABC’s “Thank God It’s Thursday” lineup — which formerly included “Scandal” — has had a place on the list.

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