Even after a television show comes to an end, actors are still raking in cash, making a nice paycheck off TV reruns. Friends star Matthew Perry is still making $20 million! Amazingly, he’s on the lower end of the residual check spectrum.
Keep reading because some of these numbers are outrageous.
Betty White, The Golden Girls: $3 Million Annually
It was a golden time when new episodes of The Golden Girls aired on NBC. From 1985 to 1992, Betty White played the innocent, naive, and yet hysterical character of Rose Nylund.
Even years later, White is still rolling in the dough brought on by the critically acclaimed series. Just from reruns, White racks in $3 million per year.
Kelsey Grammar, Frasier: $13 Million Annually
From his epic popularity in Cheers, Kelsey Grammar’s character Frasier Crane wound up getting a spin-off series of his own, Frasier. The sitcom ran for 11 seasons, with Grammar making a whopping $1.6 million per episode.
His bankroll didn’t stop when the show ended in 2004, though. Between reruns and syndication checks, Grammar is making around $13 million per year.
Ed O’Neill, Modern Family: $10 Million Annually
Ed O’Neill graced the big and small screen for years before landing the iconic role of Jay Pritchett on Modern Family. Nominated for three Primetime Emmy Awards and winning four Screen Actors Guild Awards for his performance, O’Neill is still basking in the huge success that came from the series.
While Modern Family ended in 2020, O’Neill is still raking in an annual $10 million from reruns.
Ted Danson, Cheers: $5 Million Annually
From 1982 until 1993, people tuned in to watch the patrons of Cheers, the bar in Boston, Massachusetts, “where everyone knows your name.” The show was led by Ted Danson and his character Sam Malone, a former relief pitcher for the Red Sox who opened Cheers.
Well, Danson is definitely cheering now because each year he earns an estimated $5 million from reruns of the sitcom.
Lucille Ball’s Estate, I Love Lucy: $17 Million Annually
Starting in 1951, Lucille Ball graced the small screen as the quirky leading lady in the sitcom I Love Lucy. Ahead of its time, this series gained traction and became one of CBS’s most popular shows.
So much so that Balls estate can still expect to earn about $17 million per year from residuals.
Courteney Cox, Friends: $20 Million Annually
Playing the role of Monica Geller on Friends, Courteney Cox quickly became a cast favorite (or maybe it was her character’s cooking). But her favoritism didn’t segue into her residual checks, as the cast came together to strike a deal with one another.
When it comes to reruns, they all receive the same amount of money per year, a solid $20 million.
David Caruso, CSI: Miami: $100,000 Annually
The CSI franchise got its start in 2000. From there, it only took two years for the first spin-off to make its debut. CSI: Miami, led by David Caruso, was a hit series during its run from 2002 to 2010, and the actor is definitely still feeling its popularity.
From show residuals, Caruso brings in $100,000 per year, just from CSI: Miami.
David Hasselhoff, Baywatch: $4 Million Annually
For 11 seasons, David Hasselhoff played Los Angeles County lifeguard Mitch Buchannon. Even after getting canceled by NBC, the series went on through syndication to become the most-watched series in the world. Luckily, for “The Hoff,” with the series’ popularity came his own.
It is estimated that Hasselhoff takes in around $4 million per year solely from Baywatch reruns.
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory: $10 Million Annually
A fan-favorite on The Big Bang Theory is the no-it-all character of Jim Parson’s Sheldon Cooper. Smart and without a filter, Parson’s performance earned him more than one prestigious award, including four Primetime Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe.
Parsons was earning an amazing $900,000 per episode by the end of the series and, when it comes to his rerun royalties, the actor earns an additional $10 million per year.
Jerry Seinfeld, Seinfeld: $110 Million Annually
One of the most popular sitcoms to come out of the 90s was Seinfeld, the show that is literally about nothing. Led by the one and only Jerry Seinfeld, the series had a solid nine-season run before coming to an end in 1998.
Even so, Seinfeld is reaping the benefits of the popular show’s reruns, bringing in at least $110 million per year, depending on his various syndication deals.
Mark Harmon, NCIS: $20 Million Annually
For 19 seasons, Mark Harmon has led the NCIS team as Leroy Jethro Gibbs. That role has served him very well, as he makes a solid $525,000 per episode, totaling $12.6 million for a season’s 24-episode run.
Even though the series is still running, Harmon makes a nice amount for old episode reruns, an estimated $20 million per year.
Ray Romano, Everybody Loves Raymond : $18 Million Annually
After making its CBS sitcom debut in 1996, Everybody Loves Raymond ran for nine seasons. The finale aired in 2005, marking the end of Ray Barone, a sportswriter with quirky friends and family.
The good news for Ray Romano is that CBS isn’t shy about reruns. Each year Romano makes around $18 million per year in residuals.
Matthew Perry, Friends: $20 Million Annually
For ten years, Friends was one of the most popular sitcoms on television. Running from 1994 to 2004, stars such as Matthew Perry, aka Chandler Bing, are still reaping the benefits of the show’s success, cashing in a lot of money each year, thanks to reruns.
On an annual basis, Perry can expect to see at least $20 million per year.
Johnny Galecki, The Big Bang Theory: $10 Million Annually
Johnny Galecki played the role of Leonard Hofstadter in the critically acclaimed sitcom The Big Bang Theory, one of the lead roles in the ensemble cast. By the end of the sitcom’s 12-season run, it’s rumored that Galecki was making around $1 million per episode!
Now, he’s raking in $10 million per year solely due to the popular show’s reruns.
Alex Borstein, Family Guy: $10 Million Annually
Alex Borstein isn’t necessarily onscreen, but her voice is! The actress is the voice of none other than Lois in the popular series Family Guy. The show has done wonders for her bank account, too. She makes around $225,000 per episode.
And, when it comes to residuals, Borstein is looking to receive an estimated $10 million per year.
Jon Cryer, Two And A Half Men: Millions
Jon Cryer played the cautious, realistic brother Alan Harper in the sitcom Two and a Half Men. Throughout its 12 season run, Cryer made a nice chunk of change. According to Celebrity Net Worth, he was making $650,000 per episode by the end of the 11th season.
By then, his base pay was $15 million per year, not including the millions he earned from syndication and rerun royalties. There is no exact sum on his royalties.
Alan Alda, M*A*S*H: $1 Million Annually
In 1972, members of the 4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital were introduced in M*A*S*H, including Alan Alda’s Captain Benjamin “Hawkeye” Pierce. The show became immensely popular, running for 11 seasons and concluding in 1983.
Even though the series hasn’t aired any new episodes in recent decades, Alda is still making $1 million per year off reruns.
Dr. Phil, Dr. Phil: $10 Million Annually
In 2002, television viewers were introduced to Phil McGraw and the Dr. Phil talk show. The host’s clinical “life strategies” became very popular, increasing viewing and making it so Dr. Phil wouldn’t have to work another day in his life if he wanted.
While his annual salary is around $88 million, about $10 million of that money is in thanks to residuals.
George Clooney, ER: $13 Million Annually
For five of the 15 seasons of the hit series ER, George Clooney played the role of Dr. Doug Ross. Even though he didn’t stay on for the entire series, it doesn’t mean Clooney isn’t seeing the benefits of once being the main character.
In fact, he’s earning around $13 million per year from the show’s residuals.
Nancy Cartwright, The Simpsons: $20 Million Annually
Nancy Cartwright plays on the more famous animated character on television, Bart Simpson on The Simpsons. In the long-running animated comedy, Cartwright has made a living voicing the oldest Simpson sibling.
Now, she is rolling in the dough brought on not only by her hefty paycheck but from the show’s residuals. Each year, she makes around $20 million.