Forbes has released its list of highest paid comedians and all of them are men


If you thought Vanity Fair‘s Late Night TV host spread was a heinous sausage-fest, just wait until you see this year’s list of top earning comedians.

Every single person on the Forbes Top 10 list for 2015 is a man – and Jerry Seinfeld, who raked in an immense $36 million US, topped the list.

Kevin Hart came in second on $28.8 million thanks to his ability to pack out stadiums, while a lucrative Vegas residency put Terry Fator in third at $21.5 million. Your faves Aziz Ansari and Louis C.K. battled it out for 6th and 7th place, with Aziz just bumping Louis out by a meagre $500,000.

According to Forbes, “The list, which mainly consists of veteran funnymen, is missing one important component of the comedy industry: women.

“The male-dominated field suffers from a lack of comediennes and, as with the rest of the entertainment industry, a pay gap persists.”

The list measures earnings before subtracting management fees and taxes between June 1, 2014 and June 1, 2015. Figures are based on data from Nielson, IMDB and other sources, as well as on interviews with agents, managers, lawyers, industry insiders and the stars themselves.

For comics to make the cut, their primary source of income had to come from concert ticket sales – which could partly explain the absence of successful female comedians like Amy Schumer who’ve made their mark on audiences via film and TV, rather than the stand-up circuit. Then again, Schumer also claims she barely made any money from the film Trainwreck. 

In any case, it’s yet another sobering reminder of just how much men dominate top earning positions – even when we think women are killing it.


The full list:

  1. Jerry Seinfeld: $36 million
  2. Kevin Hart: $28.8 million
  3. Terry Fator: $21.5 million
  4. Juff Dunham (tie): $19 million
  5. Russell Peters (tie): $19 million
  6. Aziz Ansari: $9.5 million
  7. Louis C.K.: $9 million
  8. Gabriel Iglesias: $8.5 million
  9. John Bishop: $8 million
  10. Dave Chappelle: $7.5 million



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