Most of us are fascinated by the lives of the rich and famous, and magazines and tabloids are willing to pay big bucks for those celebrity photos that we’re all eager to see. The paparazzi may be a hassle – or worse – to the Hollywood A List, but the demand for the insights into those elusive celeb lifestyles is undeniable, and it makes huge money for media outlets and celebrities alike.
One of the most prolific sources for feeding our voracious need for celebrity news is Harvey Levin’s TMZ empire, which includes an extremely popular website and TV show. It’s worth a staggering $55 million, because demand for celebrity dirt has allowed TMZ to see massive growth in the nearly 10 years that it has been around. It’s not just sites like TMZ that are willing to make the effort to give fans what they want. More traditional, long-standing celebrity magazines are notorious for paying exorbitant amounts of money for exclusive celebrity photos that no other news source would have access to. Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher may be divorced now, but when they were in the midst of wedded bliss British tabloid OK! was willing to pay an estimated $3 million for the first look at the celebrity power couple’s nuptials.
The wedding photos of Moore and Kutcher were the most expensive ever sold, but there are some celebrity photos that sell for so much more: That is, the goldmine of celebrity baby photos. When cuteness and celebrity are combined, the guaranteed popularity of the theme means celeb mags will shell out scary millions to nab those photos. The following are the ten most expensive celebrity baby photos, of all time.
10. Harlow Winter Madden: $1 million, People
People paid $1 million for the first photos of Harlow Madden, the daughter of socialite Nicole Ritchie and Good Charlotte lead singer Joel Madden. Nicole Richie and her daughter graced the cover of a February 2008 issue of People Magazine. Richie and Joel Madden married in 2010 and the couple is still together to this day; they had a second child, Sparrow Madden, in 2009.
9. Maddie Briann Aldridge: $1 million, OK!
In 2007, Jamie Lynn Spears announced during an interview with OK! that she was pregnant by her boyfriend of the time, Casey Aldridge. She was just 16 years old when she announced her pregnancy. Spears announced her engagement in March 2008, but by March 2009 the couple had called off the engagement. She appeared on the cover of a July 2008 issue of OK! with her newborn daughter Maddie, and the magazine paid her $1 million for the photoshoot.
8. Honor Marie Warren: $1.5 million, OK!
Jessica Alba met her husband, Cash Warren, while filming Fantastic Four, and the couple were married in 2008. The couple has two daughters, the first of which – Honor Marie – was born in 2008. Everyone was eager to get a glimpse of Alba’s first daughter, so OK! was willing to pay $1.5 million for the first baby photos, which appeared in a July 2008 issue of the magazine.
7. Max Liron Bratman: $1.5 million, People
Christina Aguilera appeared on the cover of the February 2008 issue of people magazine with her newborn son Max. She had the baby boy with her husband at the time, Jordan Bratman. People paid a staggering $1.5 million for the exclusive photos of Aguilera and her son. The pop star told the magazine that her son completely changed her life.
6. Dannielynn Birkhead: $2 million, OK!
When Anna Nicole Smith gave birth to her daughter, Dannielynn, the birth certificate stated that Smith’s partner at the time, Howard K. Stern, was the father. After a lengthy paternity suit it was revealed that Larry Birkhead was the true father, and once the facts were revealed OK! paid a lot of money, $2 million, for the first photo of Smith’s daughter with her real father.
5. Pax Thien Jolie-Pitt: $2 million, People
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie sold the first photos of their third adopted child to People magazine for an astounding $2 million. Pax Thien was adopted from an orphanage in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on March 15, 2007. The rights to the post adoption photos were also sold to Hello! for an undisclosed amount.
4. Levi Alves McConaughey: $3 million, OK!
OK! paid a whopping $3 million for the first photos of Levi Alves McConaughey, who is the first son of Brazilian model Camila Alves and Oscar winner Matthew McConaughey. The couple appeared on the cover of an August 2008 issue of OK! with their newborn. They have since had two more children, another son and a daughter.
3. Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt: $4.1 million, People
Brad and Angelina’s first birth child, Shiloh Nouvel, was born on May 27, 2006. Shiloh Nouvel was born in Swakopmund, Namibia, and Pitt and Jolie donated all the profits made from the sale of Shiloh’s first baby photos to charities that benefit African children. People paid $4.1 million for the first photos, while Hello! paid $3.5 million for the British rights to the pictures.
2. Maximilian David and Emme Maribel Muñiz: $6 million, People
Jennifer Lopez gave birth to her twins, one son and one daughter, on February 22, 2008. Lopez has since divorced Marc Anthony, The father of the children. The couple appeared in the March 2008 issue of People with the twins – People reportedly paid $6 million for the exclusive photos.
1. Knox Leon and Vivienne Marcheline Jolie-Pitt, $14 million, Hello! and People
Angelina Jolie confirmed the rumours that she was expecting twins while she was attending the Cannes Film Festival in March 2008. She gave birth to the twins on July 12, 2008, in France. The first photos of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie with the twins were in high demand, and two celebrity magazines, People and Hello!, joined together to pay a staggering $14 million for the first photos. All the proceeds from the sales of the photos were donated to the Jolie-Pitt foundation.