How Much Celebrities Earn Compared to Lottery Jackpots

Many people believe that winning the lottery will give them enough money to live off of and have some fun with, enabling them to quit their job and finally relax. In some cases, this is possible as there have been some truly colossal lottery jackpots won over the years. But when you look at what some celebrities earn in a year, it becomes clear that, for some, lottery-sized earnings don’t spell an early retirement.

As you’ll likely know, once you’re in a certain earning tier, your money can earn itself more than enough to live off of. In fact, with many celebrities, wages draw in comparatively little to share sales, licensing deals, or even sponsorships. Regardless, here, we’re comparing how much the highest-earning celebrities bring in to lottery jackpots from around the world.

Who are the highest-earning celebrities?

The de facto source for Forbes celebrities list. At the time of writing, the complete stacks of 2021 celebrity earnings weren’t in, but the 2020 rankings were quite staggering. Atop the pile sat Kylie Jenner, who made much of her $590 million by selling a 51 percent stake to Coty.

Next was Kanye West at $170 million, followed by three sports stars: Roger Federer ($106.3 million); Cristiano Ronaldo ($105 million); and Lionel Messi ($104 million). Commencing the bottom half of the top ten sat Tyler Perry with $97 million after another strong year for his array of entertainment properties.

Brazil’s talismanic soccer star, Neymar Jr., followed at $95.5 million, with Howard Stern ($90 million), LeBron James ($88.2 million), and then actor Dwayne Johnson ($87.5 million) in tow. They all made huge sums of money, but in an early look at the top entertainers of 2021, it’s director Peter Jackson and his $580 million atop the pile after selling Weta Digital.

How the high-earning celebs compare to lottery jackpots

Celebrities work all year to earn their millions, and even several years in the instances of sudden income via a sale of company shares. Lottery winners, on the other hand, only need to get lucky once with a winning ticket to land cash that’s not too far off of the top earners.

Right now, the largest lottery jackpots to look forward to later in the year are: El Niño at $770 million; El Gordo de Verano at $132 million; and Mega 2022 at $110 million. With the jackpots of these sizes, they would rank first, third, and fourth among the 2020 celebrity top-earners.

Of course, some of these jackpots will end up being split between winners, and there are much more regular draws in other big-money lotteries. At the time of writing, there had been 382 EuroMillions jackpots won, with the average win of the total €49,346,076,633.48 clocking in at a massive €129.2 million ($142.1 million).

In the US, the biggest overall jackpot won goes to the Powerball in 2016, which split $1.586 billion between three ticket holders, giving them each $528.67 million – still short of Jenner and Jackson. However, the second-largest – as well as the third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh – all went to single tickets and paid between $699.8 million and $1.537 billion via Mega Millions or the Powerball.

Celebrities earn a tremendous amount of money, but landing one of the biggest lottery jackpots in the world each year would put you amongst them – if not above them in the Forbes rankings!

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Dan Dunn
Dan Dunn
Executive Managing editor

Editor and Admin at MarkMeets since Nov 2012. Columnist, reviewer and entertainment writer and oversees all of the section's news, features and interviews. During his career, he has written for numerous magazines.

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