Most people dream of getting to the point in their careers where they can demand a certain salary. This is a sign that you’ve “made it big” in your field, and when you’re able to get the money you request, it shows that you’re well respected as a professional.
When you’re a celebrity and have the ability to “call the shots” when it comes to your salary, this is often an indication that you’re extremely popular (at the moment). It could also mean that you’ve been in the business for so long that you’ve earned the right to have more control over your career. Of course, there are some celebrities who are especially difficult when it comes to their salaries. Some famous people have been known to “not even get out of bed” if they’re not going to be paid at least $1 million. Are these celebs proving that they’re actually spoiled and entitled? Maybe. Are they simply demanding what they feel they deserve at this point in their careers? Perhaps. All we know is, $1 million is a lot of money, and anyone who can request it as a salary is pretty powerful. Here are 12 celebs who don’t work for less than $1 million.
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12 NeNe Leakes
Rumor has it that when the cast of the hit Bravo reality show The Real Housewives of New York (season 6) found out that NeNe Leakes, who was part of The Real Housewives of Atlanta cast, was demanding more money (even though she was making $1 million), they decided to try their luck with Andy Cohen and demand raises as well. Sadly, the truth is that Leakes has earned the right to “not get out of bed for less than $1 million” because she’s done wonders for boosting ratings during her time on the show. NeNe has stated that she wants to get serious about her acting career, and stated that was one of the reasons she decided to leave the reality show. But recently it's been reported that she may rejoin the cast.
11 Justin Bieber
If you’re a teen girl (or, let’s face it, an adult) who has a huge crush on Justin Bieber and knows all of his songs by heart, chances are you’ve begged and pleaded with your parents (or your friends) to invite Bieber to your next birthday party. This sounds like a great idea in theory, but unless you can come up with at least $1 million, it’s probably not going to happen. That’s pretty much Justin’s standard rate for performing at private events. So, it looks like you’d have better luck trying to snag tickets to Justin’s next concert. The tickets might be pricey, but at least they won’t cost a million dollars.
10 Christina Aguilera
The former Mickey Mouse club star and award-winning singer is currently taking her break from her hosting gig at The Voice (Gwen Stefani is taking Christina’s place). Aguilera still has to find a way to make money, especially since she recently welcomed a daughter with her fiance (Aguilera also has a son from her previous marriage). Christina reportedly earned a million dollars for performing at a Halloween party. The show was in San Diego and lasted for about an hour, which meant Christina was making over $16,000 a minute. Not bad for 60 minutes of singing. Looks like these gigs can hold her over until she gets back in “the chair”.
Whether you’re a huge fan of hip-hop, or you want to see if you can get a glimpse of Beyonce in person, you can book rapper and mogul Jay-Z to host your next party. According to reports, he charges around $1 million (in some cases $1.5 million) to “get the party started” for you. And honestly, who’s not going to want to come to your party if Jay-Z’s going to be there? He hosted the 2014 New Year’s party at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, so that should give you a pretty good idea of the epic, unforgettable night you and your friends would have if you actually got Jay-Z to show up. Just make sure you’ve got the cash.
8 Mariah Carey
Muammar Gaddafi invited Mariah Carey to perform at a private event for his son, for which she was reportedly paid $1 million. Carey is also one of the highest paid musical artists, mainly because she writes most of her own material and has learned how to manage her money well over the years. Mariah has also been known to have a reputation for being pretty demanding when it comes to accepting gigs, but it’s safe to say she’s earned that, since she’s been in the business for more than two decades. She only had to perform four songs at the event, and when she got criticism for accepting such a large amount of money, she kind of pretended that she didn’t fully realize who Gaddafi was. Maybe Carey felt a little guilty about the high price, but that didn’t stop her from taking the money.
Beyonce is often crowned the “queen of all music” by her fans, so it’s no surprise that she would acquire at least $1 million in some of her business dealings. Beyonce has won several awards in music, both as a solo artist and as part of Destiny’s Child, and she’s known for her work ethic and putting on phenomenal live shows. While it’s normal for her to charge in the six digits for a public appearance, she once charged $1 million to give a five-song performance in St. Barts on New Year’s Eve for Muammar Gaddafi, who apparently knows good music. Needless to say, critics had a lot to say about that, but we’re pretty sure that’s not the first time Beyonce has made a cool million just by showing up somewhere. To her credit, she donated her earnings for that appearance to charity. After all, it’s not like she can’t make the money back.
6 Kim Kardashian
It has been said that the woman who is mostly “famous for being famous” won’t even get up in the morning if her day isn’t going to involve earning at least a million dollars. Must be nice to have that kind of power, since word has it that she requires $1 million or more per product endorsement. In addition to being one of the stars of the hit E! reality series Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Kim K has promoted a number of products, from diet pills to nail polish. She and her sisters Kourtney and Khloe, also have clothing lines for women and children that are sold in retail stores. Kim is also paid a pretty penny to make public appearances and is constantly making money due to the significant influence she has in the fashion and beauty world. Even though she’s currently pregnant with her second child and often talks about how much she hates being pregnant, she’s still making money from any of the products she may mention during this special time in her life.
5 Jennifer Lopez
Jenny From the Block (aka La Lopez aka J.Lo) makes about $1.2 million just to show up to an event. That’s not even counting her clothing and fragrance line, the projects put out by her production company, her record and movie sales, or her hosting gig on American Idol. In 2001, she performed at a birthday party for a Russian millionaire and his wife, and made $1.2 million for a 40-minute show. Not bad at all. Lopez also recently hosted the American Music Awards, and opened the show with an impressive dance routine and some notes that indicated she’s been taking some intense vocal lessons. So, it’s only a matter of time before she can up the price she charges for live shows.
Music icon Cher is apparently taking offers to be a guest at your next birthday party. That is, if you’ve got $1.5 million to spare. There’s no word on whether or not Cher will perform a song or two once she arrives at your soiree, but you could probably convince her to hum a tune or two for that price. We’re not sure if this birthday appearance fee is so high because Cher is considered a legend, or because she hasn’t had any live shows lately. Either way, the price hasn’t gone down, so we’re guessing someone is coughing up the cash to put Cher on their birthday party guest list.
In 2012, it was reported that singer and fashion icon Rihanna, was paid $8 million to turn on the Christmas lights at a shopping center in London. To be fair, she was also giving a holiday concert there, but that’s quite a pretty penny to make an appearance and sing a few songs before calling it a day. Rihanna has been in high demand for quite some time now, so it was likely only a matter of time before she had the type of influence to demand such a steep price for showing up and entertaining her fans. Chances are onlookers got some style ideas while getting the chance to sing along during the concert.
2 Michael C. Hall
Michael C. Hall is best known for his starring role in the show Dexter. When he grew tired of being on the show (probably because he didn’t want to be typecast as “the creepy guy”), he informed the producers that he wanted to start appearing on Broadway. Hall was offered $20 million for the final two episodes of Dexter. That, however, was not acceptable to him. He demanded $4 million more, which would put him at $1 million per episode, or he would leave the show. Looks like Hall got what he wanted money-wise; hopefully he’ll achieve similar success on Broadway.
1 Robert Downey, Jr.
Robert Downey, Jr. has been acting for quite some time. He’s even overcome addiction and spent some time in rehab to get his life back on track. Sure, he’s a pretty talented actor, but it’s obvious that he has a bigger fanbase than we’re aware of. Downey starred in Iron Man, and reportedly made $50 million for this film alone. However, other cast members only took home checks of about $200,000. Looks like Robert has a great agent to negotiate his salaries for him. Or, maybe he has the type of star power that prompts directors to give him as much money as possible for him to agree to appear in a movie.
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