Lifestyle & Belief

Kristen Stewart tops Forbes list of highest-paid Hollywood actresses


Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie arrive at the 84th Annual Academy Awards at the Hollywood & Highland Center in February.


Ethan Miller

Kristen Stewart, star of "The Twilight Saga" films and "Snow White and the Huntsman," jumped to the top of annual list of highest-paid actresses.

Stewart, 22, earned an estimated $34.5 million from May 2011 to May 2012, pushed Angelina Jolie out of top spot.

Cameron Diaz, who had a surprise hit with "Bad Teacher," came in second with $34 million, while Oscar-winner Sandra Bullock came third with $25 million, despite having taken a break from the industry since filming 2009's "The Blind Side."

Further down the list were: Charlize Theron ($18 million), Julia Roberts ($16 million), Sarah Jessica Parker ($15 million), and Meryl Streep ($12 million).

Forbes magazine bases earnings on pay, profits, endorsements and advertising work and by talking to agents.

It credited the earning power of an up-and-comer like Stewart with the studio's need to keep stars on for the third and fourth films in a series:

"At this point, could anyone else play Bella Swan in Twilight?" Forbes wrote."Probably not; if the studio tried to switch in another actress, fans would revolt. So for the last two Twilight films, Stewart has been able to demand an estimated $12.5 million per film, plus a share of the profits."

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Dorothy Pomerantz, Forbes Los Angeles bureau chief, added:

"She is earning a lot of money from one of the most successful franchises of all time. This is who you would expect to see right now.

"This year you are seeing somebody young and at the brink of potentially great stardom sitting on the top of the list."

London's Daily Telegraph pointed out that the top-10 actresses get paid only about 55 percent of what the top-10 men earn.

The top-10 actresses earned a total of $200 million, while the 10 highest-earning men collectively made $361 million.