Half Of The World’s 30 Highest-Paid Celebrities Under 30 Are People Of Color

Written by Hayley C. Cuccinello

The World’s 30 Highest-Paid Celebrities Under 30

highest-paid celebrities under 30
The Weeknd is the highest-paid celebrity in the world under 30. Photo: Forbes

 

In 2010, Abel Tesfaye started releasing free mixtapes under a mysterious moniker, The Weeknd. You can still listen to his music for free, but the 27-year-old gets a hefty paycheck.

The Weeknd is the world’s highest-paid celebrity under 30, earning $92 million in the year leading to June 1, 2017, before taxes and fees. The Weeknd ranked sixth on the FORBES Celebrity 100, our list of the 100 highest-paid celebrities in the world.

Despite clocking 3.2 billion streams in our scoring period, most of his eight-figure haul came from an estimated $75 million touring advance. As The Weeknd told FORBES, the entertainment economy has evolved. “We live in a world where artists don’t really make the money off the music like we did in the Golden Age,” says the Weeknd. “It’s not really coming in until you hit the stage.”

Fellow Canadian Justin Bieber takes second place. Bieber graced the cover of FORBES in 2012 when he was barely 18 and made the Celebrity 100 with $53 million. The 23-year-old pop star shows no signs of slowing down, collecting a whopping $83.5 million.

British songstress Adele, who turned 29 this past spring, rounds out the top three with $69 million. Her album 25 was the bestselling album of 2016 with 1.73 million copies sold, even though it was released in 2015.

Together, the 30 highest-paid celebrities under 30 earned $1.24 billion combined between June 1, 2016, and June 1, 2017, before management fees and taxes. Earnings estimates are based on figures from Nielsen, NPD Bookscan, Pollstar, Box Office Mojo, Songkick, D’Marie and IMDB, as well as interviews with industry insiders and sometimes the stars themselves.

highest-paid celebrities under 30
Kylie Jenner is the youngest entertainer on the FORBES Celebrity 100. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

Eleven of the cohort barely made the cut at 29 years of age. Twenty-year-old Kylie Jenner is the youngest of the bunch with $41 million, ranking 10th overall. The most junior scion of the Kardashian-Jenner clan is also new to the ranks of the world’s highest-paid celebrities, as are many of these young entertainers, including 24-year-old Chance the Rapper (No. 24, $33 million).

Though the top three entertainers are in the music industry, athletes dominate the list with 20 list members. eight are NBA stars, including the 29-year-old Golden State Warriors point guard Steph Curry (No. 7, $47.3 million). Football follows close behind with five list members, such as 28-year-old Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (No. 29, $26 million). The remaining seven, including UFC star Conor McGregor (No. 18, $34 million) come from a variety of fields.

The ranks of the highest-paid celebrities under 30 is notably diverse with 50% non-white list members. This is likely due to the high number of athletes. According to the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, 74.4% of NBA players identify as either African-American or black while African-American players comprise 69.7% of the NFL.

Asides from Adele and Jenner, only three women made the list. Twenty-seven-year-old pop star Taylor Swift ranks ninth with $44 million. Rihanna (No. 15) and Emma Stone (No. 29), both 29, earned $36 million and $26 million respectively. Stone is also the world’s highest-paid film actress. Though this is partly due to the preponderance of professional athletes, the overall list of the world’s highest-paid celebrities is highly imbalanced as well with 84% male list members.

highest-paid celebrities under 30
James Harden, a FORBES 30 Under 30 alum, is one of the highest-paid celebrities under 30.

All but three members of the cohort have made FORBES 30 Under 30 lists. Houston Rockets player James Harden has come a long way since 2015, the year he was named to the 30 Under 30 Sports class and earned a spot on the world’s highest-paid NBA players list with $18.8 million. Harden more than doubled that sum this year, making $46.6 million and notching eighth place.

Harden told FORBES in 2015 that persistence was his key to success and he’s demonstrated it, making the highest-paid NBA players list three years in a row. “If you have a dream, chase it no matter what it takes,” he told FORBES in 2015. “No matter what the haters say, no matter when people doubt you, focus on what you want to do and go out there and achieve it.”

 Posted with permission of Forbes Media LLC

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