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Judge Judy Gets $45 Million a Year

By / 08.12.10

TV Guide has released a list of what the top television stars earn, and while the recession and lower revenues have forced networks to pay some stars less, looking nice and pretending to be someone else on camera still beats the hell out of that master’s degree you got in social work just to make $40,000 a year.

Oprah leads all on-air talent by making a staggering $315 million annually, followed by — WHAAA? — Judge Judy? Judge Judy somehow makes 45 MILLION DOLLARS. Per year. I am completely baffled by that.

Other notables: Ryan Secrest gets $15M a year for “American Idol,” Charlie Sheen $1.25M PER EPISODE for “Two and a Half Men,” Jon Cryer $550K/episode on the same show, Hugh Laurie $400K+ for “House,” and the four main stars of “Desperate Housewives” — Teri Hatcher, Eva Longoria Parker, Marcia Cross, and Felicity Huffman — all make $400K an episode. Across a 22-episode season, that’s $35.2M in salary for a lousy excuse for a comedy, which is more money than I can fathom. I couldn’t spend thirty-five million dollars on hookers and drugs if I tried. But man, would I love to try.

Full list after the jump.

Drama (per episode)

Hugh Laurie (House) $400,000+

Christopher Meloni & Mariska Hargitay (Law & Order: SVU) $395,000 (each)

David Caruso (CSI: Miami) $375,000

Marg Helgenberger (CSI) $375,000

Mark Harmon (NCIS$375,000

Laurence Fishburne (CSI) $350,000

Kyra Sedgwick (The Closer) $350,000

Denis Leary (Rescue Me) $350,000

Gary Sinise (CSI: NY$275,000

Patrick Dempsey (Grey’s Anatomy) $250,000

David Boreanaz (Bones) $200,000

Jeffrey Donovan (Burn Notice) $200,000

Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife$175,000

Dana Delany (Body of Proof$150,000

Lauren Graham (Parenthood) $150,000

Jada Pinkett Smith (HawthoRNe) $150,000

Jimmy Smits (Outlaw) $150,000

LL Cool J (NCIS: Los Angeles) $125,000

Chris O’Donnell (NCIS: Los Angeles) $125,000

Mark Feuerstein (Royal Pains) $125,000

Jason Lee (Memphis Beat) $125,000

Joe Mantegna (Criminal Minds) $125,000

Tom Selleck (Blue Bloods) $125,000

Michael Weatherly (NCIS) $125,000

Matt Bomer (White Collar) $100,000

Nathan Fillion (Castle) $100,000

Thomas Gibson (Criminal Minds) $100,000

Jon Hamm (Mad Men) $100,000

Cole Hauser (Chase) $100,000

Alex O’Loughlin (Hawaii Five-0) $100,000

Timothy Olyphant (Justified$100,000

Scott Caan (Hawaii Five-0) $80,000

Angie Harmon (Rizzoli & Isles) $75,000

Anna Paquin (True Blood) $75,000

Blair Underwood (The Event) $75,000

Zachary Levi (Chuck) $60,000

Ian Somerhalder (The Vampire Diaries$40,000

Shailene Woodley (The Secret Life of the American Teenager) $40,000

Ashley Tisdale (Hellcats$30,000

Late Night/Talk Syndication (per year)

Oprah Winfrey $315 million

Judge Judy Sheindlin $45 million

David Letterman (The Late Show$28 million

Jay Leno (The Tonight Show$25 million

Conan O’Brien (The Conan O’Brien Show$10 million

Ellen DeGeneres (The Ellen DeGeneres Show$8 million

Jimmy Kimmel (Jimmy Kimmel Live$6 million

Chelsea Handler (Chelsea Lately$3.5 million

George Lopez (Lopez Tonight$3.5 million

Reality (per year)

Ryan Seacrest (American Idol$15 million

Joel McHale (The Soup$2 million

Piers Morgan (America’s Got Talent$2 million

Kate Gosselin (Kate Plus 8$250,000 per episode

Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi (Jersey Shore$30,000 per episode

Comedy (per episode)

Charlie Sheen (Two and a Half Men$1.25 million

Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men$550,000

Marcia Cross (Desperate Housewives$400,000

Teri Hatcher (Desperate Housewives$400,000

Felicity Huffman (Desperate Housewives$400,000

Eva Longoria Parker (Desperate Housewives$400,000

Dan Castellaneta (The Simpsons$400,000

Julie Kavner (The Simpsons$400,000

Tina Fey (30 Rock$350,000

Jeremy Piven (Entourage$350,000

Steve Carell (The Office$297,000

Angus T. Jones (Two and a Half Men$250,000

David Duchovny (Californication$200,000

Kevin Dillon (Entourage$200,000

Adrian Grenier (Entourage$200,000

Miranda Cosgrove (iCarly) $180,000

Edie Falco (Nurse Jackie$175,000

William Shatner ($#*! My Dad Says$150,000

David Spade (Rules of Engagement$150,000

Ed O’Neill (Modern Family$100,000

Patrick Warburton (Rules of Engagement$85,000

Betty White (Hot in Cleveland$75,000

Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory$60,000

Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory$60,000

Ty Burrell (Modern Family$50,000

Jane Lynch (Glee$50,000

Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory$40,000

Matthew Morrison (Glee$30,000

Selena Gomez (Wizards of Waverly Place$30,000

Dylan and Cole Sprouse (The Suite Life of Zack and Cody$20,000 (each)

Rico Rodriguez (Modern Family$15,000

News (per year)

Matt Lauer (Today $16 million +

Katie Couric (CBS) $15 million

Brian Williams (NBC) $12.5 million

Diane Sawyer (ABC) $12 million

Meredith Vieira (Today$11 million

Bill O’Reilly (Fox News) $10 million

George Stephanopoulos (ABC) $8 million

Keith Olbermann (MSNBC) $7 million

Shepard Smith (Fox News) $7 million

Wolf Blitzer (CNN) $3 million

Christiane Amanpour (ABC) $2 million

Lawrence O’Donnell (MSNBC) $2 million

Eliot Spitzer (CNN) $500,000


TAGSCharlie SheenCSI: MIAMIDAVID CARUSODESPERATE HOUSEWIVESJUDGE JUDYOPRAH WINFREYTwo And A Half Men

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