Michael Jackson Tops Prince, David Bowie on 2016 List of Highest-Earning Dead Celebrities

Will Thorne
Variety

Michael Jackson has been named as the highest-earning dead celebrity of 2016, earning far more than deceased golfer Arnold Palmer and “Peanuts” cartoonist Charles Schulz.

The sale in March of Jackson’s half of the Sony/ATV Music Publishing catalog for $750 million helped him top Forbes’ annual list, and his total pretax earnings of $825 million ranks as the largest earnings this year by any celebrity dead or alive. The figure also represents about 17 times more than that accumulated from beyond the grave by his closest rival Schulz.

The list also includes three celebrities who have passed away in 2016. Arnold Palmer comes in at number three with $40 million, most of which he earned before his death as Forbes says he died just days before their cutoff point. Prince, who passed away in April 2016, is number five on the list with $25 million, and Ziggy Stardust himself David Bowie is number eleven with $10.5 million.

Take a look at the top 13 on Forbes’ list:

  1. Michael Jackson, $825 million
  2. Charles Schulz, $48 million
  3. Arnold Palmer, $40 million
  4. Elvis Presley, $27 million
  5. Prince, $25 million
  6. Bob Marley, $21 million
  7. Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, $20 million
  8. John Lennon, $12 million
  9. Albert Einstein, $11.5 million
  10. Bettie Page, $11 million
  11. David Bowie, $10.5 million
  12. Steve McQueen, $9 million
  13. Elizabeth Taylor, $8 million

 

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