By Dorothy Pomerantz
Jay Z and Beyoncé Knowles are so much more than just the first couple of hip-hop: They're a combination of two of the savviest businesspeople in entertainment. They made more than any other celebrity couple this year, with an estimated $95 million in earnings between June 2012 and June 2013.
Both are musicians at the top of their games, with multiple hits under their belts. Jay Z's recent "Watch the Throne" album went platinum and launched a world tour that brought in $1.4 million per night in the U.S. Knowles, who took a short break when her daughter, Blue Ivy, was born in January of last year, was back with a vengeance this year with her Mrs. Carter Show world tour, which grossed an average $2 million per night.
Then there are their other interests. Jay Z was a part owner of the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where the Brooklyn Nets play. He sold his stake in the team and now has to dump his share in the arena, too, because he's started his own sports agency: Roc Nation Sports, which represents star athletes like Kevin Durant and Victor Cruz. Knowles has a fragrance collection and a clothing line called House of Deréon. Blue Ivy could soon join the family business. She's already been on one of her dad's songs, and her parents have petitioned to trademark her name for the right to use it on anything from baby clothes to toys.
Bey and Jay earned $15 million more than the No. 2 couple on our list: Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen. Like Jay Z and Knowles, Brady and Bündchen have used their fame to build bigger businesses around themselves. We estimate the couple earned a combined $80 million between June 2012 and June 2013. The highest-paid model in the world, Bundchen out-earned her football star husband by $4 million. In addition to her modeling, Bündchen earns big off of her line of flip-flops from Brazilian footwear company Grendene. She is a part owner of the company, and its shares have doubled since 2012.
Off the gridiron, Brady earns from endorsement deals with companies like Uggs and Under Armor. His new contract with the New England Patriots, which included a $30 million signing bonus, will have him playing in the NFL until he's 40 years old.
To compile our list, we talked to managers, agents, producers and other in-the-know folks to come up with estimates for each celebrity's entertainment-related earnings. Our research was done for our Celebrity 100 list, which measures earning between June 2012 and June 2013. We did not subtract for taxes, agent fees or other expenses related to being a celebrity.
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt rank third with a combined $50 million in estimated earnings. Unlike the other top couples on our list, they don't have larger businesses built around their fame -- the vast majority of their money comes from their film pay. Pitt did earn an estimated $7 million from his Channel No. 5 commercial last year, but only because it's so rare to land Pitt as a spokesperson.
After a brief hiatus to have a voluntary double mastectomy, Jolie is back with a big-budget Disney film, "Maleficent." The re-imagined tale of "Sleeping Beauty" is set to hit theaters next summer.
My comment a ways back was absolutely sarcastic, except towards the end. I read this whole thread and unfortunately it only had/has 39 comments!! I am sure if we were carrying on about how beautiful and handsome they are and how talented etc etc. there would be 100s of comments; perhaps 1,000s. I agree with most of what has been said here and I have been preaching this for decades. STOP supporting these worthless a-holes who contribute nothing really to society as a whole. It's amazing to me to see people complaining about doctors salaries or what firefighters/rescuers make for example but happily support people like Jay-B and the Brady Bundchen. Or Branjolina. Let me see them go out and work a real job for a single week. It's obscene to see these people not only make the money they make through self-marketing and branding but then be idolized while they are being driven to the bank in their limos laughing all the way at how STUPID the "little people" are. Yes, only in America.
Why do lliberal press and the 90 per centers always attack bankers and corporate executives rather that celleds and sports igures Banks and Corporations create thousands of jobs.that affect the economy.Celebs,demand ridiculous things when they are on tour They have lavish homes all over world and could Feed many of the worlds hungry and provide medical care. Corporate executives earn high salaries but much of depends on performance..