Salman Khan is the highest paid Indian celebrity according to a ranking based on their earnings, followed by the captain of Indian cricket team Virat Kohli, Akshay Kumar, Deepika Padukone and MS Dhoni. This is the first time in five years that a woman is among the top 5 highest paid celebs in the country.
With an earning of Rs 253.25 crore through his film releases, television appearances and brand endorsements between October 1, 2017, and September 30, 2018 (the period under consideration), the 52-year-old Salman Khan became India’s highest-paid celebrity on the list for the third consecutive year, according to a Forbes ranking of highest earning celebrities ‘2018 India Celebrity 100’.
Close behind is Virat Kohli, with Rs 228.09 crore in earnings, probably the first time a cricketer has come close to challenging Salman’s position. Actor Akshay Kumar (Rs 185 crore) moved up from the previous year to No 3 spot in 2018.
With cumulative earnings of Rs 3,140.25 crore, it was a lucrative year for the 100 celebrities on the list. Last year, the figure was 17 percent lower at Rs 2,683 crore, said Forbes.
It was inevitable that actor Shah Rukh Khan, who did not have a single release during the period under review, would lose the second spot (Rs 170.5 cr earnings) that he held last year to No 13 (Rs 56 crore) this year said Forbes.
Similar is the case with Priyanka Chopra who slips from No 7 last year (Rs 68 crore) to No 49 (Rs 18 crore) in 2018.
Actor Deepika Padukone at No 4 (Rs 112.8 crore) is the highest-earning woman celebrity and becomes the first woman to break into the top five positions since the inception of the list in 2012. However, there are 18 women on the list this year, down from 21 in 2017, said Forbes.
Cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar holds a unique distinction of featuring in the top 10 every year. Though he retired from the game in 2013, his earnings stood at Rs 80 crore this year compared to the average of Rs 73.12 crore over the past seven years.
Aamir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Sachin Tendulkar and Ajay Devgn are on rank six to ten.
Fifteen of the celebrities on the list are from South India. The Tamil and Telugu film industries have seven actors each, while Kerala has one.