From ‘Different Strokes’ to ‘Family Ties’, 80’s sitcoms ruled the television airwaves. The 1980’s introduced the world to a talented group of actors that achieved crossover success in television and movies, some of whom are still popular actors today. The success of television shows like ‘The Cosby Show’ and ‘Gimme A Break’ spawned spin-offs and opportunities outside of acting for its stars.
80’s heartthrobs Scott Baio and Joey Lawrence landed major label recording deals, which allowed them to launch music careers and expand their international fanbase. Eddie Murphy’s single off his 1985 album, ‘Party All The Time’, reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100. Teen idols like Tom Cruise, John Stamos and Rob Lowe are major stars that are still active in Hollywood and viewed as sex symbols today. Robert Downey, Jr., Johnny Depp and John Cusack have gone on to build highly respected acting careers, each earning several Academy Award nominations.
To find your favorite actors from the 80’s, you do not have to look much further than the popular TV shows and movies that are produced today. Star of the popular 80’s sitcom ‘Silver Spoons’ Ricky Schroder is among the actors that have enjoyed a resurgence of their careers. His role as Danny Sorenson on ‘NYPD Blue’, which ran from 1998 to 2001, initiated his return to popularity. Schroder recently appeared in The Hallmark Channel film ‘Our Hearts’ in 2013 and stars in the upcoming 2014 major film ‘Locker 13’.
Which 80’s actors have maintained their wealthy status? Take a trip down nostalgia lane for this rundown of famous ‘80s actors that are still rich.
Scott Baio – $3.5 Million
Most known for his role as Charles on ‘Charles In Charge’, which ran in syndication from 1987 to 1990, Scott Baio remains an active Hollywood player. Baio previously played Chachi Arcola on the hit sitcom ‘Happy Days’ and its spin off ‘Joanie Loves Chachi’, which debuted in 1982. He went on appear in other television series, record two albums for RCA, star in films and reality TV, direct and produce. Baio currently produces and stars in a Nick at Nite series, ‘See Dad Run’, which films on the old ‘Happy Days’ stage.
Holly Robinson Peete – $4 Million
Holly Robinson Peete rose to fame starring as Judy Hoffs on the popular police drama ‘21 Jump Street’. The series debuted on Fox Network in 1987 and ran until 1991. Pete also found success starring on ‘Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper’, a television sitcom airing on ABC from 1992 to 1997. She has since starred on several television series, co-hosted ‘The Talk’ on CBS and is a children’s book author. An active autism advocate, Peete recently appeared on a segment of ‘Autism Live’. She is married to former NFL quarterback Rodney Peete.
Justine Bateman – $5 Million
Former sex symbol, Justine Bateman played Mallory Keaton on the NBC sitcom ‘Family Ties’. Bateman was nominated for two Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe Award during the shows run, from 1982 to 1989. In 1998, she hosted ‘Saturday Night Live’ and starred in the film ‘Satisfaction’ with Julia Roberts and Liam Neeson. After running a clothing design business, which sold collection pieces to Saks and Fred Segal, Bateman returned to acting in 2003. She continues to make television appearances, guest starring on ‘Arrested Development’ with her younger brother Jason Bateman in 2006 and on ‘Modern Family’ in 2013. Bateman is also a producer and scriptwriter, selling the ‘Wizards of Waverly Place’ script to Disney and adapting ‘The Clique’ book series for Warner Bros.
Joey Lawrence – $6 Million
After guest starring on sitcoms ‘Different Strokes’ and ‘Silver Spoons’, Joey Lawrence landed a starring role as Joey Donovan on NBC’s ‘Gimmie A Break’. Making its debut in 1982, the sitcom ran until 1987. The former teen heartthrob also found success co-starring on the hit TV series, ‘Blossom’, which aired from 1991 to 1995, and as a recording artist. His career has also included guest starring roles on television and appearances on reality TV. In 2000, he was a contestant on ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and he co-hosted the ABC reality show ‘Splash’ in 2013. Lawrence now stars opposite Melissa Joan Hart on the ABC sitcom ‘Melissa & Joey’.
Molly Ringwald – $11 Million
‘Sixteen Candles’ star Molly Ringwald experienced huge success as a teen actress in the ‘80s. ‘Sixteen Candles’ was released in 1984 and Ringwald also went on to star in ‘The Breakfast Club’ and ‘Pretty in Pink’. A member of the “Brat Pack, Ringwald was considered the most successful teen actor of the ‘80’s and was reportedly the muse of director and producer John Hughes. The “Brat Pack” also included Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Anthony Michael Hall, Demi Moore, Andrew McCarthy, Alley Sheedy and Judd Nelson. Ringwald recently starred in the ABC Family network series ‘The Secret Life of the American Teenager’, which ended in 2013.
Jason Bateman – $12 Million
A popular teen actor in the 1980’s, Jason Bateman reached success as a supporting character on the NBC sitcom ‘Silver Spoons’, which starred Ricky Schroder. Bateman then appeared on ‘The Hogan Family’ an NBC sitcom that aired from 1986 to 1990, which also starred Valerie Harper. The former teen idol has continued to work in television and film, and was recognized for his work on the comedy series ‘Arrested Development’. Bateman won an Emmy Award for his role on the series, which is now on Season 4. The actor recently starred in the comedy film ‘Identity Thief’.
Winona Ryder – $14 Million
Winona Ryder made her film debut in ‘Lucas’, but reached stardom after starring opposite Michael Keaton in the 1988 film ‘Beetlejuice’. Ryder also experienced success appearing in the cult film ‘Heathers’. She has gone on to experience major film success, winning a Golden Globe and receiving several Academy Award Nominations. Equally known for her off-screen antics, Ryder was romantically linked to ‘Edward Scissorhands’ co-star Johnny Depp and was arrested for shoplifting in 2001. After a hiatus, she returned to acting and won two Screen Actors Guild Awards in 2010 for appearances in ‘When Love is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story’ and ‘Black Swan’. Ryder stars in the upcoming 2014 film ‘Turks & Caicos’.
Lisa Bonet – $16 Million
Lisa Bonet rose to fame playing Denise Huxtable on the successful television series ‘The Cosby Show’. The NBC sitcom ran from 1984 and 1992. According to TV guide, it was the top television series of the 1980’s. Bonet also starred in the first season of its successful spin-off ‘A Different World’, which debuted in 1987. Her doppelganger, actress Zoe Kravitz, is the product of her marriage to singer Lenny Kravitz, which ended in 1993. Bonet has gone on to appear on television and in films, recently filming the movie ‘Road to Paloma’ with current husband Jason Momoa. The thriller is set for release in 2014.
Johnny Depp – $350 Million
The Fox Network crime series ‘21 Jump Street’ sparked movie star Johnny Depp’s acting career in the ‘80s. Depp became a teen idol while playing Officer Tom Hansen from 1987 to 1990. Since 1990, Depp has starred in eight of friend and director Tim Burton’s films. His most commercially successful films include the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ series, ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’. The repeat Golden Globe winner has generated billions of dollars at the box office, was named People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man Alive” twice and is in the Guinness Book of World Records 2012 edition for being the highest paid actor. Depp is also a director and producer and is scheduled to star in 7 upcoming films.