In contrast to the Celebrity 100 list which rates celebrities based on fame and how much they earned, this new list is strictly based on how much they earn and there are some surprises.

What is not is a surprise is that Oprah Winfrey tops the list. Forbes estimates that between May 2011 and May 2012, she earned $165 million. This is the fourth year in a row that she has topped this list. Number five is one that I didn’t see coming, but after reading where the money came from, it totally made sense. Dr. Dre brought in a whopping $130 million, but not from the recording industry. He made the money from his Beats by Dr. Dre headphones because last August, handset maker HTC paid $300 million for a 51% stake in the company, resulting in pretty much most of that $130 million for Dre says Forbes. Check out the Top 20 below and how much they each made. I’ve also included a video from Forbes commenting on the Top 5 of the list. Britney Spears made the list too!

Commentary: Top 5 Highest-Paid Celebrities

Top 20 Highest-Paid Celebrities

  • 20. Britney Spears – $58 million
  • 19. Ryan Seacrest – $59 million
  • 18. Donald Trump – $63 million
  • 17. Dr. Phil – $64 million
  • 16. Manny Pacquiao – $67 million
  • 15. Rush Limbaugh – $69 million
  • 14. Dick Wolf – $70 million
  • 13. Tom Cruise – $75 million
  • 12. Elton John – $80 million
  • 11. Glenn Bleck – $80 million
  • 10. Simon Cowell – $90 million
  • 9. George Lucas – $90 million
  • 8. James Patterson – $94 million
  • 7. Howard Stern – $95 million
  • 6. Tyler Perry – $105 million
  • 5. Dr. Dre – $110 million
  • 4. Jerry Bruckheimer – $115 million
  • 3. Steven Spielberg – $130 million
  • 2. Michael Bay – $160 million
  • 1. Oprah Winfrey – $165 million