It’s almost Halloween, which means it’s time for “Forbes” magazine to release its annual list of the 13 Top-Earning Dead Celebrities. This year, it’s Michael Jackson by a landslide. He made $275 millionwhich is more than the other 12 people on the list made combined.
He also earned more than most living celebrities. He beats everyone on this year’s “Forbes” Celebrity 100 list except for Oprah Winfrey, who topped that list with $315 million.
Michael’s earnings come mainly from his stake in the Sony / ATV music catalog . . . his posthumous movie “This Is It” . . . and a renewed interest in his back catalog since his death.
#1.) Michael Jackson, $275 million
#2.) Elvis Presley, $60 million
#3.) J.R.R. Tolkien, $50 million
#4.) Charles Schulz, $33 million
#5.) John Lennon, $17 million
#6.) Stieg Larsson, $15 million (–He wrote the novel, “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” and its two sequels. They’ve already been made into movies in his native Sweden . . . and American versions are in the works now.)
#7.) Dr. Seuss, $11 million
#8.) Albert Einstein, $10 million
#9.) George Steinbrenner, $8 million (–He’s only been dead since July. Earnings used for this list were compiled from October of 2009 to October 2010. So technically, he earned most of his money while he was alive.)
#10.) Richard Rodgers, $7 million (–He was half of the legendary songwriting team Rodgers and Hammerstein.)
#11.) (tie) Jimi Hendrix and Steve McQueen, $6 million
#13.) Aaron Spelling, $5 million