Highest Paid TV Actors And Actresses Of 2015

By on August 31, 2015 in ArticlesHow Much Does

It pays to be funny… literally. Of the highest paid television stars of the year, 15 of them hail from the land of sitcoms and of those 15 actors and actresses, 10 of them are on just two sitcoms: The Big Bang Theory and Modern Family.

Modern Family's bombshell, Sofia Vergara, tops the list with a hefty $30 million earned between June 1. 2014 and June 1, 2015. Her castmates, Ed O'Neill, Eric Stonestreet, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Ty Burrell also made the list (although significantly further down in the ranks), thanks to the cast banding together in 2012 to lock in multi-year contracts that would have their per episode salaries grow with each season. Side projects and endorsement deals account for the big disparity between Vergara's salary and the Modern Family men.

The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons was narrowly edged out of the top spot by Vergara and is enjoying being so highly ranked for the first time due to a new contract, the big Broadway hit "Act of God," and last year's Emmy for Leading Actor in a comedy series. Don't cry for Parsons' castmates however, as they are all sitting firmly in the third, fourth, and fifth spots among TV's highest paid actors. The Big Bang Theory cast's contract calls for additional salary increases over the show's ninth and tenth seasons, so look for this merry band of misfits to make even more money on next year's list.

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

This list measures earnings before subtracting management fees and taxes; figures are based on data from Nielsen as well as interviews with agents, managers, lawyers and syndication experts.

24. Kerry Washington

Earnings: $6 million

Starring in: Scandal

22. Zooey Deschanel (tie)

Earnings: $7 million

Starring in: The New Girl

22. Lena Dunham (tie)

Earnings: $7 million

Starring in: Girls

21. Julianna Margulies

Earnings: $8 million

Starring in: The Good Wife

20. Kevin Spacey

Earnings: $9.5 million

Starring in: House of Cards

18. Ellen Pompeo (tie)

Earnings: $10 million

Starring in: Grey's Anatomy

18. Melissa McCarthy (tie)

Earnings: $10 million

Starring on: Mike & Molly

16. Eric Stonestreet (tie)

Earnings: $10.5 million

Starring in: Modern Family

16. Ed O'Neill (tie)

Earnings: $10.5 million

Starring in: Modern Family

15. Jesse Tyler Ferguson

Earnings: $11 million

Starring in: Modern Family

14. Ty Burrell

Earnings: $11.5 million

Starring in: Modern Family

11. Mariska Hargitay (tie)

Earnings: $12 million

Starring in: Law & Order: SVU

11. The Kardashian Sisters (combined) (tie)

Earnings: $12 million

Starring in: Keeping Up With The Kardashians

11. Simon Baker (tie)

Earnings: $12 million

Starring in: The Mentalist

10. Patrick Dempsey (tie)

Earnings: $12 million

Starring in: Grey's Anatomy

9. Ray Romano (tie)

Earnings: $15 million

Starring in: Everybody Loves Raymond

9. Jon Cryer (tie)

Earnings: $15 million

Starring in: Two and a Half Men

5. Ashton Kutcher (tie)

Earnings: $20 million

Starring in: Two and a Half Men

5. Kunal Nayyar (tie)

Earnings: $20 million

Starring in: The Big Bang Theory

5. Simon Helberg (tie)

Earnings: $20 million

Starring in: The Big Bang Theory

5. Mark Harmon (tie)

Earnings: $20 million

Starring in: NCIS

4. Kaley Cuoco

Earnings: $25 million

Starring in: The Big Bang Theory

3. Johnny Galecki

Earnings: $27 million

Starring in: The Big Bang Theory

2. Jim Parsons

Earnings: $29 million

Starring in: The Big Bang Theory

1. Sofia Vergara

Earnings: $30 million

Starring in: Modern Family

Articles Written by Amy Lamare
Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based writer covering business, technology, entertainment, philanthropy, and pop culture. She spent 8 1/2 years covering the entertainment industry for www.hsx.com. She attended the University of Southern California where she majored in Creative Writing. An avid long distance runner, weekends she can be found running the streets of Los Angeles training for 1/2 and full marathons. Follow her on Facebook.
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