TV Stars Bring Home the Bucks

The new Fall TV season is underway and everyone is talking about their new “must see” programs as well as the plot twists and turns of their perennial favorites.  For those who wonder what their favorite stars make for creating these iconic roles, the annual list of top TV salaries is out.

Jon StewartThe top earners in television are those who have part-ownership of their programs, development deals, and endorsement money.  When calculating total earnings, television hosts tend to come out on top, as late night hosts Jay Leno and David Letterman bring home upwards of $20 million a year while Jon Stewart reportedly will earn between $25-$30 million.  This is nothing compared to Judge Judy Sheindlin’s earnings of $47 million or Simon Cowell’s reported $95 million. It really takes a savvy accountant to figure out the final income of these moguls.

In the case of scripted television, salaries are calculated by the episode.  While most network fare runs 22-24 episodes in a year, cable networks like HBO, AMC, and USA may have seasons as short as 8-10 episodes and rarely go more than 12-14. So take the salaries below and multiply them by the number of episodes aired to get an idea of the base salary of these top earners.

2013-14 Base Salaries:

Ashton Kutcher (Two and a Half Men): $750,000
Mark Harmon (NCIS): $525,000 + points
Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory): $325,000
Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory): $325,000
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory): $325,000
Claire Danes (Homeland): $250,000
Michael Weatherly (NCIS): $250,000
Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother): $225,000
Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation): $200,000
Robin Williams (The Crazy Ones): $165,000
Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones): $150,000
Max Greenfield (New Girl): $75,000
Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black): $50,000

And remember, Kaley Cuoco gets paid to host various awards shows, receives residuals for not only TBBT but for other shows on which she was a regular and has multiple endorsement deals.  Ashton Kutcher gets “That 70s Show” money as well as movie money and ownership of “punk’d” and investments in several top websites and digital companies.  In fact, every performer on the list has a portfolio of income streams in addition to their base salary that can add millions to their annual pay.

Gabby Newfall is an entertainment accountant who writes about the money behind television and films.  Her writing has appeared on numerous blogs and financial sites, covering topics from a list of the top Phoenix accounting firms to the highest grossing films of all time.


October 18, 2013Permalink Leave a comment

Fleetwood Mac

FlMacFleetwood Mac has been making great music for decades. The have transcended many trends and genre popularities that have been associated with specific time periods. They have also remained consistent in creating popular music, and the major band members remain true to their group. While this is true, it is also true that they have seen great turn over in various additional members, and some of the major four have come and gone throughout the years. Stevie Nicks is probably, well almost undoubtedly the most famous member of the band, and her unique voice and songwriting skills have played a major role in Fleetwood Mac’s enduring success and career. In addition, she has enjoyed great success on her own as a solo artist.

The band has led an interesting and complicated life together and apart. While the main personalities have remained associated with the band, it has seen great transformations and so have the relationships within it. It is interesting that most of them have not played on all albums or been involved with all tours, though their image as a single iconic unit remains strong. When people ask to name the members of Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks is always first. Lindsey Buckingham, Mic Fleetwood and Christine McVie and John McVie are also usually included and have composed the main five throughout most of Fleetwood Mac’s history.  There has also been a history of interpersonal issues and drug use.  In many cases a Los Angeles law firm was their number one ally!

How Much is Justin Beiber Worth?

Teen sensation Justin Bieber, who turned 19 in March, is reportedly worth $110 million (USD).  Not bad for someone who was completely unknown just five years ago.

Bieber, who was born in Ontario, Canada in 1994, first came to fame with a YouTube video of him performing “So Sick” by Ne-Yo.  The incredible popularity of the video got him noticed by Usher who produced Bieber’s albums and helped turn him into a true superstar.  Bieber has had five number one records, been nominated for two Grammy awards and has over 35 million followers on Twitter.  He has also branched out into acting, appearing in several television programs and one movie to date.

Most of Bieber’s worth comes from his singing. In 2012 alone he earned $55 million.  This includes profits from album sales and touring as well as income from two perfumes.  Average it out and he earned an hourly salary of over $6,000. The singer has also started investing in startup companies like Spotify, Enflick, and Tinychat.

In 2012 Bieber purchased a mansion in California. The seven bed/8 bath home cost $6.5 million and included a guest house, huge pool and spa and 1.3 acres of land. During 2012 he played a great show at the Sprint Center in Kansas City KS.  In April 2013 it was reported that Bieber was looking to buy a home in Dubai.

Bieber also likes fast cars. He owns two Ferrari’s, a Ducati 848 EVO superbike, a hybrid Fisher Karma, and a Cadillac CTS-V that has been modified to look like a Batmobile.

photo by: torbakhopper

Lauryn Hill is Going to Jail

Many celebrities have faced tax problems over the years. Everyone from Willie Nelson to Dionne Warwick to Ozzy Osbourne has had run ins with the IRS. Lauryn Hill might have been just another such celebrity with one distinction: The ex-Fugee’s rapper is actually going to serve jail time for her transgressions.

LaurynHillTVHill first made a name for herself as lead singer with the 90s group The Fugee’s.  She later went solo with a multi-awarding winning album entitled The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.  She continued to write and record music and branched out to producing albums for other singers. She even acted in a few movies. All that ended in the mid 2000’s when Hill went into semi-retirement and seclusion to escape the recording industry which she claims is rife with sexism, ageism, racism, manipulation and hostility.

That’s when the financial problems started.  Hill failed to file tax returns from 2005-2007.  During this time she earned a significant income, $1.8 million according to some reports; $2.3 million according to others.  The taxes on that amount totaled around $1 million.

Last summer Hill pleaded guilty to three counts of tax invasion in a New Jersey court.  Her lawyer, Nathan Hochman, asked the judge to consider probation as this is Ms. Hill’s first offense and has six minor children at home.  Hill reportedly paid over $970,000 in back taxes prior to the official sentencing.

The maximum penalty would have been three years in prison, but the judge gave Hill the minimum sentence. Hill is to serve three months in a federal prison camp (one month for each count). She will then have a year of supervised release with the first three months being home confinement with electronic monitoring. In addition to paying all overdue taxes and penalties, Hill will need to pay a $60,000 fine.

Coming out of professional retirement, Hill recently signed a new deal with Sony Worldwide Entertainment which will allow her to launch her own recording label which will feature her music and videos.  Her first single in over a decade, “Neurotic Society” was released a few days before her sentencing.  The new deal is expected to help cover Hill’s tax debt and legal fees.

Lauryn Hill is set to begin her prison sentence on July 8th.

Famous Motor Racing Movies

Motor racing as a sport is broad and all encompassing; from stock car racing and formula one to drag racing and demolition derby.  And each type of racing has their own set of die-hard racing fans.  However, once they hit the big screen they are able to reach a whole new audience.motor racing movies

Motor racing movies fit into nearly every movie category; animated, classic, action, sports, comedy.  So no matter your taste, there is a movie for everyone.

Cars, produced in 2006 by Disney and Pixar, is probably one of the most well-known and most viewed motor racing movies.  It features the story of Lightning McQueen, a hotshot race car, as he discovers the true meaning of friendship.  While it’s definitely kid-friendly, parents and race fans can appreciate the racing jokes and cameos by famous racing celebrities.

For the action/adventure set, The Fast and The Furious series has been a real hit.   The first in the series released in 2001 and has everything that those seeking adventure are looking far; fast cars, stunning effects, and exciting car chases.  The 6th installment hit theaters this year and only time will tell if there will be more to come.

Those that enjoy a good laugh are sure to find a hit in Will Ferrell’s Talladega Nights.  It features the story of Ricky Bobby, played by Ferrell, as he fights to stay the top NASCAR driver.  In true Will Ferrell fashion there is no end to the jokes and humor and you’re sure to find more with each consecutive viewing.

Motor racing movies are not just a modern fascination.  Elvis Presley starred in the 1968 movie Speedway, a motor musical about a race car driver in tax trouble.  It has cars, music, romance, and Elvis!  While not exactly true to life, The Love Bug is a classic racing movie that has been winning fans since its release in 1968. When race car driver Jim Douglas is reduced to racing in the demolition derby where he becomes the owner of VW Beetle named Herbie, who has a mind and will of his own.

A lot has changed over the years; the plots, the budgets, the special effects.  But what hasn’t changed is the love and fascination with auto racing as a sport and the enjoyment that both kids and adults, men and women have with watching it on the big screen.

Article by Alex Penman, a business writer who writes for his own blogs, social sites, and for individuals such as race car drivers.

photo by: pedrosimoes7

Yo Yo Ma

Is a performance by the renown cellist Yo Yo Ma a concert, a recital, an event or all of the above? It is uncommon for a solo musician who plays a classical instrument to achieve the amount of interest and following that has been bestowed on Ma, though he draws audience members in much the same manner as a rock star. Okay, he may not fill a stadium-sized arena, but that may be due more to the manner of the performance than the amount of fans he has. A solo cellist does not run and dance around the stage like rock star, nor do they typically have elaborate light shows or a band to enhance the overall effect. Watching a performance by Yo Yo Ma is much easier to appreciate in a smaller venue with fewer people in attendance. Where ever he is, concert tickets for his performances sell out quickly.

YYo MMa is Chinese though he was born in Paris, France. His father was a music professor which is part of the reason he had such an early exposure to the cello, and great encouragement and support in learning it. They family moved to New York when Ma was four. Prior to playing the cello, which he began studying when he was four, the same year he moved to New York, he had studied violin and viola. By the time he was seven he had already begun public performances, and at that young age he performed for President John F. Kennedy. After high school Ma studied at the Julliard School of Music and Columbia University before finally reenrolling at Harvard, where he received his bachelor’s degree in 1976. He would later receive an honorary doctorate by the same prestigious school. Ma has an enormous repertoire and has released many cd’s featuring a diverse collection of music. He has played with some of the world’s top orchestras and also performs solo shows.

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones have been making music and performing concerts for decades. Their front man and lead singer Mick Jagger is recognized throughout the world. They are an English band that was formed in London in 1962. They officially came together when Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards joined pianist Ian Stewart and multi-instrument player Brain Jones. Drummer Charlie Watts and bass player Bill Wyman would complete the early line up. Jagger and Richards formed an early songwriting team in the band and have remained the primary writers through their history.

StonesRolling Stones concerts are often closer to being festivals and at the least are major spectacle events. They have played to sell out audiences around the world and back major stadiums and arenas. The merged onto the US scene in the 1960s as part of what is now considered to be the British invasion. Many London and other areas in Britain musicians and bands crossed the water during this time and found greater success in the United States that was previously considered to be possible. The also coincided with the emergence of rock ‘n roll as the major social force it has become.

The Beatles are the band that is most strongly associated with the invasion and they are also credited with reinventing rock as music genre. The Stones have created many albums and hit singles through the years and made a financial fortune. Every song on their concert play list is a crowd favorite, and they could play all of their hit songs in once concert, as there wouldn’t be enough time. Concert tickets sell out fast and fans often save their ticket stub as a souvenir of the event. Some of the Stones’ most popular songs include Gimme Shelter, Satisfaction, Jumpin Jack Flash, It’s Only Rock and Roll, Angie and Sympathy for the Devil. The list could go on and on, and represents only a fraction of their hits.

A Short Biography on Montel Williams

I could go on for a long time about this man, but here is the short biography.

Montel Williams was born in San Antonio, TX. He was an athlete, a musician and a great student. Well loved by his peers and very caring, it is not hard to see why he makes such a great talk show host. His show lasted for twelve years in which time himself and the show he put on won awards. Although he has sometimes gotten in trouble for the things he has said, he has only ever stuck up for what he thought was right. This seems to best explain the things he has decided support with his money and fame. This includes the Montel Williams MS fund, and Money Mutual. He obviously made a point of only supporting the products that he feels will give people a better quality of life. This site has some more information on him.

Money Mutual for an example is a leading cash advance loans company, and one of the few out there to be trusted. Their goal is to match you with the best loan possible, to help you out when you fall on hard times. They don’t require a credit check, or a background check, and just trust you to pay back the loan. It is short term, and not intended to deal with situations where you have lost a job and need some income to live on for a few months, but is perfect for those times when something unexpected hits and you don’t have the money to take care of it until your next pay check. No one wants to have to take the bus to work longer than they have to, and when the car breaks down between pay checks, cash advance loans are proven to be the best way to get the money you need fast. All you need to do is be 18 or over and make a steady income of $800 a month or more. It seems super easy.

If you are interested in seeing him speak on this, there is more information here. I’m glad to be able to see Montel Williams on television and know that he is dedicated to helping people when they fall on hard times.

Scott Tucker’s War Horse in Kansas City

The Tony winning Broadway play War Horse produced by Scott Tucker is expected to be presented in Kansas City, Missouri as part of a series of national shows during 2014.  War Horse is a musical that takes place during WW1 and concerned their contribution to the war effort and the vast casualties incurred.  The play stars a puppet controlled by several of the performers as the main character combat horse Jake.

This is the first time that Scott Tucker has brought the play to Kansas City, Missouri.   It is hoped that War Horse plays part in the 100 year anniversary of World War 1 and in publicizing the local Liberty Memorial. There were over 16 million military and civilian deaths during the war with over 20 million injured.

Wayang Opera

In 1850, Wayang Opera was a famous source of entertainment for the general public. Popular with immigrants from China and taken with them to various parts of the world. Many of the Chinese immigrated to Singapore. The stages were usually set up on the street side, just before the show began, temporary but very well lit by colorful neon lights, these shows drew quite a crowd. Most of the time the show was offered for free, or at a very minimal cost. The audience sat around the raised stage cabaret style, and often times carried on as though no show was taking place, eating and drinking and smoking and chatty loudly, as though at a party. Then, when the show became serious or reached a climax in a scene, all eyes were on stage and they were mesmerized.

operaSingapore is known for the eclectic cultural mix, and evidence of that is every where, from the businesses, to the business hotels Singapore has become a melting pot. From Italian restaurants to French, from Vietnamese sculptors to Roman painters, the local residents and the tourists are from a variety of back-grounds. This is true as well, for the performers of Wayang. For the most part, traditional performances are involving Hokkien actors as well as Teochew and Hokkien . And as with the times of Shakespeare, there were traditionally, no female actresses. The roles being given to young boys, as was the way the first years of Ophelia. However that is not the case today. At one point there were real theaters built for the opera, at one time about six. These theaters were located in the same district on Smith Street. Various nicknames for the street were used over the years, as Wayang Street or Theater Street. However with the beginning of film and the popularity of movie house that began in the early 1930’s the permanent locations began to disappear. Many abandoned the craft and the tradition for years.

But just as fashion repeats history in the United States, the younger population has begun to appreciate the art form. And the older performers and audience members are there to teach and to help revive this culturally important art form. Many Wayang operas are performed on the streets of Singapore today, as well in Opera Halls.


Borg and McEnroe

There are very few who have the stuff of legends on the tennis court, and as the world gets ready for another season of tournaments, there is a great deal of expectation for what will happen in 2010. There are some who have captured the hearts and minds of tennis fans, and these roads have been clear-cut by the legends that came before them. For nearly every player, it’s difficult to get away from the weight of comparisons to the players of the past, and one of the most charismatic figures is still Bjorn Borg .

30 Love (explored)The Swedish player made history, and for a few brief years, defined a new role for tennis players. At the height, between 1978-1980, he won the big titles in both French Open tennis as well as in Wimbledon tennis , and his face was everywhere. In that sense, then, he really set a pattern that made it possible for tennis players to enter into the culture as rock stars. This is where the line between talent and celebrity gets crossed, and it does take more than just years of practice on the courts. For those who are called to take this position at the center of the world stage, it takes a certain amount of ambition, enormous personal vision, and a very healthy dose of good luck.

There’s no question that Borg had talent, that special ability to dazzle fans with his double backhand on the court that helped make him such an unbeatable force. His blonde flowing locks and natural rugged looks didn’t hurt, either. But when it came to the rivalry of his career, the one that pitted him against another great, John McEnroe , this is where his personal charisma really came through.

Sometimes it takes great contrasts to reveal strengths, and this is where the luck was really working for him. His coolness on the court was always one of his strengths, but it took those moments of playing against the fiery McEnroe for it to be visible for everyone, even those who normally don’t pay attention to personality in the game. He was the king of cool, and still is, and McEnroe was the first big brat of the game, and both roles seemed to have been pre-ordained, like a comedy team who capture our imaginations through the strength of their oppositional chemistry. It will be interesting to see when history repeats itself again.

photo by: Evil Erin

Celebrity Endorsements: Tiger Woods or Lance Armstrong?

When a company makes the decision to use a celebrity, a sports figure or any public figure to endorse their products or their services , they are taking a risk. This risk may prove to be worth it, or it may prove to be disastrous. The public is interested in the lives of public figures, sometimes obsessively so. It is for this reason that the character of the person making the endorsements be taken into consideration. Online companies such as Money Mutual have employed the use of celebrity endorsements, just as the endorsements have been used through other mediums such as TV and Radio.

erwgolferTake the situation with golf legend Tiger Woods . Due to his personal life becoming public knowledge, he has lost corporate sponsors and lost his credibility when it comes to speaking for companies services and products. It is not whether or not a person’s private life should be anyone else’s business. It is that regardless, Woods is in the public eye, and when that happens there is no long a life that is lived privately and discreetly.

The other side of the celebrity endorsed advertising campaign coin, is world renown cycling legend, Lance Armstrong . Here was not only and extraordinary world class athlete, perhaps the greatest cyclist of all time, but due to the strength and the courage he demonstrated during his long battle with what should have been terminal cancer, he gained not only the respect of the those in the world of biking, but the respect of all those struggling with fighting cancer themselves. The Nike advertising campaign is well known. It is the simple statement, Just Do It. Nike took a risk on Armstrong.  Due to the fact that Armstrong came back to win so many Tour de France titles following such an extreme medical situation, he was accused of taking drugs to enhance his performance. This kind of accusation made him a greater investment risk and could have the end endorsement gigs for him. But the man was tested more in one year than most other athletes got tested throughout their careers, and he always proved to be riding clean. And not only that, his strength and determination was even more emphasized, creating a more powerful spokesman for the the Nike Company. This high risk investment paid off, and their Armstrong campaign was one of the most successful campaigns of all time.  However, that all changed when the accusations proved true and now he lives his life in disgrace, and facing legal problems.

Information provided by Trevor Hicks, a sports writer who covers cycling, golf, tennis, and auto racing.

Montel Williams Military Career

MontelMoneyMMontel Williams is a major TV personality in the US.  He has done many things in his life including military, show business and as a spokesman for multiple sclerosis (MS).  Montel was born in Baltimore in 1956 and was an accomplished scholar while growing up.  After graduation he entered the military and eventually ended up as a as a naval intelligence officer, specializing in languages.  He subsequently worked with the National Security Agency on classified missions.  All in all he was in the military for 22 years and towards the end of this career got involved with training and doing presentations.  This was an introduction to skills that he later developed which let to a new career in entertainment and eventually the made his a star with The Montel Williams Show.  Later in life he was diagnosed with MS and this led to his involvement with the the Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA) and the MS Foundation.  He is also a spokes man for payday loan company Money Mutual (learn more at


James Franco – Balancing Career and College

James Franco is one of Hollywood’s top celebrities these days.  He has appeared in many movies including 127 Hours, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Milk, and Pineapple Express to name but a few.  He is also a writer producer and director!!  As well as these monumental tasks he has appeared on Saturday Night Live and hosted the Oscars!

When he’s not busy with these time consuming tasks James has put a major focus on college and education.  And this has been a priority in his life right up till the present.

His first college experience was as an English major with an emphasis on creative writing.  This was undertaken at UCLA in 2006.  He continues to act throughout this time often studied during breaks even during basketball season.  In 2008 he received his undergraduate degree from UCLA with a GPA of over 3.5.

He then moved to New York City and undertook a graduate degree at Columbia University enrolled on the MFA writing program.  At this time he was also enrolled at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts studying film making and Brooklyn College studying fiction writing, and also attending North Carolina’s Warren Wilson College for poetry.

In 2010 he received his MFA from Columbia University and has since enrolled in the PhD program at Yale University.  In 2012 he plans to attend the University of Houston where he has been accepted into the PhD program for literature and creative writing.

As well as this he will be teaching a fall course in poetry and short films at NYU.

Franco’s philosophy on education is that he loves attending school and sharing his interests with others.  He loves the subjects that he studies which makes a big difference.  He also credits it with helping his acting career.

April 9, 2013Permalink 1 Comment

James Cameron’s Space Mining Project?

James Cameron, the film director and intrepid underseas explorer is lining up for his next project – asteroid mining!! The company Planetary Resources has been set up by numerous wealthy investors including Cameron. The aim of the project is to improve the prosperity of humanity and to add “trillions of dollars to the global GDP.” Many people are guessing that this includes asteroid mining.

A mysterious message has been put out about Planetary Resources that is encompasses two important areas of our life – space exploration and natural resources. The aim is to develop a new industry that will help sustain life on planet Earth. Full details will be given at a later date.

There are many challenges associated with commercial exploration of space including financial and technological. There are also many benefits though it could be a long time before they are seen.

“Planetary Resources” will be launched on April 24 at 10:30 a.m. The project will be presented during a press conference that will be organized at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, Washington.

contributed by Suzie Jacks, a celebrity blogger who writes about actors, directors, musicians, and sports stars. Her work can be found on entertainment sites, lifestyle blogs, and sports sites.

Kardashian Sisters Getting Sued

The Kardashian sisters are getting sued because of false claims made about their weight loss product QuickTrim. Customers claim that the ads tweets and interviews made about the product were misleading and false. After the product was evaluated by the FDA the main ingredient was found to be caffeine which has little effect on weight loss. QuickTrim is made by Windmill Health Products.

The lawsuit also states that the advertising for QuickTrim enourages the use of all their products to increase effectiveness.

Read more about the Kim, Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian QuickTrim class-action lawsuit.


Hollywood People

From reader William Gemlich comes this statement. Is there any reason why this Nation is getting so bad?. Now it is Samual L Jackson talking “garbage”. Hollywood has not helped this Nation to become a better Nation. For the past 30 years, Hollywood has turned out films that feature the F word as the most used word, followed by MF, CS and everything inbetween. Can anyone wonder why this Nation is going “down the toilet”. We deserve everything we get. And all you and others can do is snicker and say what a great film it is.

Chris Klein Stars in “Wilfred” After Rehab

Chris Klein’s name may have been mentioned in the headlines recently, but not because of his inclusion in a blockbuster movie, like when he did “American Pie” all those years ago. Instead, Klein’s had a public battle with alcohol, one that landed him in rehab after his second drunk driving offense. Now that’s he clean and sober, he’s being given another chance, and has announced that he’ll be doing a multi-episode arc on the new FX comedy, “Wilfred,” premiering this summer. Read more..

Zsa Zsa Gabor to have part of right leg amputated

Zsa Zsa Gabor was hospitalized Sunday to undergo surgery to have part of her right leg amputated because gangrene was setting in, a representative said.

Doctors examined a lesion on Gabor’s leg that had gone from just over an inch to about a foot and was growing gangrenous, publicist John Blanchette said.

“They’re going to have to amputate part of her leg,” Blanchette said. “They said if they didn’t, she could lose her life.” He said the amputation would likely be below the knee,

She was taken to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and had been prepared for surgery Sunday night, Blanchette said. Her husband Prince Frederic von Anhalt was with her.  Read more…