You may hate to love them, but the reality is, people love Reality TV and the stars are getting rich. Reality TV first took off with Survivor over a decade ago, but in the passed few years, it has evolved into so much…less than that. Forget the elaborate challenges and exotic locations, simply following around spoiled brats or watching people make fools of themselves whilst pissed drunk is now making some people richer than you can imagine. I’m sure this has kids some kids saying, “Forget being a doctor or fireman, mommy, I wanna be a reality star when I grow up!”
Some reality stars are better than others at making the most of what has been handed to them and seizing the many money-making opportunities around them. A lot of the top earning reality stars came from money anyway, while others are just getting started. From book deals, to appearance fees, to Dancing & Skating With The Stars, to product endorsements…Reality TV has opened many doors for many people. The Daily Beast has compiled the list of the Top 10 highest paid reality stars this past year. Who do you think is number one? Check out the list below.
This lady went from dental assistant to Playboy NFL wife. Her first episode of “Kendra” lured in 2.6 million viewers, making it the highest debut on E! since The Anna Nicole Show. She’s also been selling an autobiography and earned $680,000 + profits from the sale of her sex tape from before she was famous.
The Jersey Shore certainly launched this DJ’s career. He was DJing before the show, and is DJing after, charging as much as $40,000 for a gig. That’s in addition to how much he makes per episode of partying on the show.
On both the family reality show, and the spinoff, Khloe and Kourtney Take Miami, Kourtney is the oldest of the girls. She has a child and you know she’s gonna be making money from children’s product endorsements for sure.
You can’t help but watch them. Also sharing in the wealth of the family business, Khloe is the youngest of the three girls and is on both the family reality show, and the spinoff as well. She was on The Apprentice where Trump scolded her for her past DUI incident. She also makes money for appearances, radio talk show, magazine exclusives, a book advance for Kardashian Konfidential, and several thousand dollars per sponsored tweet. Damn!
His washboard abs and GTL on the Jersey Shore have launched this player in to the household name we know as “The Situation”. He’s the highest paid star on the show, and is the most ambitious off the show. He charges between $15,000-$50,000 for an appearance, he has released a book and was given a rumored six-figure advance for his autobiography. He has fitness DVDs, nutritional supplement endorsements, has a best selling iPhone App, part owner of a vodka brand called Devotion, and is working on a cologne. I gotta hand it to him. He’s working hard. He was a disappointment on Dancing With The Stars though.
The star of Jon & Kate Plus 8, which is now just Kate Plus 8, makes a lots of money for her show. She also did Dancing With The Stars, and has put out four books that sold quite well. She’s got a fifth book called “Love Is In The Mix,” hitting shelves this coming January.
Also from The Hills, Audrina has succeeded in keeping it classy (unlike Heidi) since the show wrapped up. She killed it on Dancing With The Stars and has a her own new Mark Burnett reality show coming in the new year. She’s endorsed Carl’s Jr. and Bongo jeans as well.
A “Reality Superstar,” as Skating with the Stars introduces her, Frankel has certainly been in the biz for a while. She was on The Apprentice, Real Housewives of New York, Bethenny Getting Married, and Skating with the Stars. She’s sold tons of recipe books on staying thin and is also working on an evolving beverage company called Skinnygirl.
The former lead in the hit reality show, The Hills skipped out on the final season and started on making some real dough. She started on her fashion career, trilogy of best selling young adult books, and her line for Kohl’s which has been flying off the shelves. Nice work, LC!
With the family business, where she co-owns a line of retail stores, a skincare line, and the K Dash QVC line as well as doing promotions for Quick Trim weight-loss supplements and her licensed line of Beach Bunny Swimwear, Kim takes the cake for the highest earning reality star. It’s certainly hard for the other reality stars to keep up with the Kardashians! She can make up to $75,000 for an appearance, recently released a book, camed out with a fragrance, and most importantly, stars in “Keeping up with the Kardashians,” with her family. The show is on season 5 and I only recently became obsessed with it.