Richest CelebritiesAuthors
Net Worth:
$80 Million
$23 Million Per Year
Feb 19, 1971 (53 years old)
Fort Washington
Author, Cartoonist, Actor, Writer, Film Producer, Game designer
United States of America
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What is Jeff Kinney's Net Worth?

Jeff Kinney is an American game designer, cartoonist, producer, actor and children's book author who has a net worth of $80 million. Jeff Kinney is best known for creating the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" children's book series. The series includes numerous books, and has spawned a number of feature film adaptations both live-action and animated. He has sold more than 150 million books worldwide and continues to sell millions more every year. The book was turned into a movie in 2010 that went on to earn more than $75 million in the US alone. Among his other notable work, Kinney helped create the children's online role-playing game "Poptropica." Jeff is consistently one of the highest-paid authors in the world, regularly earning $20 million per year between book advances, royalties and more.

Early Life and Education

Jeff Kinney was born on February 19, 1971 in Fort Washington, Maryland. He has three siblings: a younger brother and an older brother and sister. Kinney was educated at Potomac Landing Elementary School and Bishop McNamara High School, graduating from the latter in 1989. He went on to attend the University of Maryland, College Park, where he created a popular comic strip for the student newspaper called "Igdoof." Kinney graduated from Maryland in 1993 with a BA degree in criminal justice.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Kinney first came up with the idea of a wimpy middle-school kid named Greg Heffley in early 1998. The character, who creates illustrated stories about his life, would become the protagonist of Kinney's children's book series "Diary of a Wimpy Kid." First released as a comic strip series in 2004 on the educational website Funbrain, it became a major hit, with online readers requesting the series in a printed physical version. Kinney went on to sign a multi-book deal with Abrams Books in early 2006 at New York Comic Con. He subsequently released the first "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" book in 2007, and received instant success. Kinney has since penned numerous further installments in the series, including "Rodrick Rules," "Dog Days," "The Long Haul," "The Getaway," "The Deep End," and "Diper Överlöde."

Due to the success of the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series, several feature film adaptations have been made, both live-action and animated. In the first three live-action films released between 2010 and 2012, Zachary Gordon starred as Greg Heffley, with other cast members including Rachael Harris, Steve Zahn, Devon Bostick, and Robert Capron. In the 2017 adaptation of "The Long Haul," the original cast was replaced, with Jason Drucker playing Greg Heffley alongside Alicia Silverstone, Tom Everett Scott, Charlie Wright, and Owen Asztalos. There have also been Disney animated film adaptations of "Diary of a Wimpy Kid," with screenplays by Kinney.

Jeff Kinney

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Spinoffs and Supplementary Books

In 2019, Kinney published a spinoff of the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series entitled "Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal." The book is written from the perspective of Greg Heffley's best friend Rowley Jefferson, who serves as his biographer. Further installments in the spinoff series have included "Rowley Jefferson's Awesome Friendly Adventure" and "Rowley Jefferson's Awesome Friendly Spooky Stories." Elsewhere in the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" franchise, Kinney has published some supplementary books, including "The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary" and "The Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself-Book." Some of these were meant to tie in with the film adaptations of the series.

Other Projects

Kinney has been involved in a number of other projects outside of the "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" series. Perhaps the most notable is the children's online role-playing game "Poptropica," which he helped create with Pearson Education's Family Education Network in 2007. The game focuses on problem-solving via quests that the player must navigate on various islands. By 2012, "Poptropica" had over 75 million registered users. In 2015, along with Pearson's Family Education Network, the game was sold to the education-technology investment group Sandbox Partners.

Among his other projects, Kinney opened a local bookstore and café in Plainville, Massachusetts in 2015 called An Unlikely Story. He also guest-hosted 10 episodes of the 10th season of the local quiz bowl show "High School Quiz Show" on WGBH in Boston. Kinney hosted the second half of the first-round games, and later the quarterfinals and semifinals, all while regular host Billy Costa was away on special assignment. Costa returned in time to host the finals.

Personal Life

Kinney married his wife Julie in late 2003. Together, they have two sons.

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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