Actors and musicians from Hollywood’s Golden Age are just the tips of the iceberg when it comes to famous people. Their works have been passed down from generation to generation, creating a legacy that will continue for generations to come. These very stars that fill our hearts have been rewarded with a life of luxury, so it should come as no surprise. So sit back and enjoy this look at the Hollywood A-listers who made the most money during the Golden Age.
Clint Eastwood – Worth $375 Million
There’s usually one actor we picture astride that horse when we envision the tenacious and fierce cowboy of the Wild West riding into town on his horse. His trademark drawl and ability to steal the show as he terrorized lawless bad guys have made Clint Eastwood a veritable American folk hero.
Oddly enough, when he first entered the movie industry, studio heads actually criticized his clenched jaw speaking style.
Barbara Walters – Worth $170 Million
When Barbara Walters entered the field of journalism, she didn’t just break the glass ceiling; she shattered it, leaving a lasting legacy and altering how Americans view the media. As the first female anchor of a prime-time evening news program in 1974, Walters used her commanding on-camera presence to land numerous jobs on the most highly regarded networks.
She received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences as a result of her talent and tenacity.
Angie Dickinson – Worth $30 Million
Angie Dickinson made her film debut in the 1950s, and although she was initially cast in smaller supporting roles, many viewers could see that she would soon advance to the position of a leading lady.
Indeed, Dickinson received her first major role in the 1959 film Rio Bravo, in which she portrayed the solely named Feathers. She then rose to prominence as one of the leading ladies of the 1960s, best known for her roles in Gun The Man Down and Dressed to Kill.
Anne Robinson – Worth $45 Million
Although Anne Robinson is a well-known television personality in Great Britain, it’s unlikely that many Americans are familiar with her. She is affectionately known as “The Queen of Mean” there due to the brutality with which she eliminated cast members while hosting The Weakest Link.
Since then, she has continued to host television programs, and viewers in the UK tune in to see what witty comment the Queen of Mean will make next. She currently serves as the host of the game show Test The Nation.
Arlene Golonka – Worth $5 Million
Arlene Golanka fits the stereotype of the carefree blonde who is also eccentric in her wild and vivacious personality and possesses a magnetism that draws everyone to her. Golanka, however, is credited with embodying it in a career that included parts on some of the most popular television programs of the Hollywood Golden Age rather than just fitting it.
Golanka’s career, which started in the late 1960s, lasted for 30 years before she retired to teach amateur young actors.
Axl Rose – Worth $200 Million
Although it’s possible that someone who has lived under a rock their entire life has never heard of Axl Rose or his band Guns N’ Roses, just having heard that name is likely to conjure images of a hard rocker who plays for the love of the music.
Indeed that does apply to Rose, who has been considered to be the support that kept this hard rock band aloft throughout their many years of rock n’ roll.
Alain Delon – Worth $200 Million
Even at the height of his popularity in the 1960s, many Americans were unaware of Alain Delon; however, had they traveled across the Atlantic, they would have probably seen his name on billboards from France to Japan.
This French actor, who was regarded as a sex icon of the time due to his critical success, was well-liked throughout Europe and, strangely enough, had a sizable fan base in Japan. Delon, despite everything, was never successful in the film industry.
Betty Lynn – Worth $3 Million
Betty Lynn was a relatively active actress who took her roles seriously. She frequently portrayed a somber, brooding woman who was going through a difficult situation. Kidding!
One of the funniest actresses of her time, Betty Lynn appeared in a number of TV shows, movies, and Broadway productions. She was also regarded as a gifted singer. Her most well-known roles were on acclaimed programs like Where’s Raymond, The Egg and I, and The Andy Griffith Show.
Betty White – Worth $75 Million
People from all generations continue to have a strong emotional connection to the name Betty White. It might surprise you to learn that many people still recognize this talented centenarian if you ask anyone under the age of thirty.
But the reason White’s career has lasted an impressive eighty years after she landed her first part in the 1939 television operetta The Merry Widow is not a secret. Her charm, talent, and sense of humor have since gained recognition across the country.
Bob Barker – Worth $70 Million
With his work as the host of Truth Or Consequences, Bob Barker—possibly one of the most recognizable hosts in television history—broke through the mold to establish himself as one of the most admired television figures.
Bob Barker, who is possibly one of the most well-known hosts in television history, broke through the mold to become one of the most admired television personalities with his work as the host of Truth Or Consequences.
Cassandra Peterson – Worth $3 Million
Cassandra Peterson, even as a young child, resisted being categorized as being “girly” at the time. Barbie dolls were off-limits to her, and she preferred the suspense and thrill of horror films instead.
She put her skills to use in several Italian rock bands during her 20s as their lead singer. Although it didn’t last forever, Peterson’s career quickly took off in the 1980s after she landed her most well-known role, Elvira.
Catherine Deneuve – Worth $75 Million
It would be difficult to find a French actress who has enjoyed greater popularity than Catherine Deneuve. Since 1957, Deneuve has routinely appeared on television and film in France, the UK, Hollywood, and, of course, everywhere else.
She was even so adored by the French people that Marianne, the national emblem of French liberty, embraced her face as her own. This is an exceptional and rare honor. Deneuve has received a number of honors, including a BAFTA and an Oscar nomination.
Cicely Tyson – Worth $10 Million
On stage and in the media Audiences and critics have found it impossible to ignore Cicely Tyson’s strong presence. Tyson played strong African American women consistently over the course of her career, which spanned seven remarkable decades. She did not let the politics or stereotypes of the time prevent her from giving the role her all.
The Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, was given to her in recognition of the significance of her work.
Cloris Leachman – Worth $21 Million
Cloris Leachman, another actress with a career that just would not end, has worked in the entertainment industry for seven decades. Leachman spent much of her lifetime on stage, where she first appeared as a contestant in a beauty pageant.
Even there, she was successful; she won the title of Miss Chicago and even participated in the Miss America pageant. Leachman has received an Academy Award and a record-breaking eight Primetime Emmy Awards in addition to her pageantry.
David Crosby – Worth $40 Million
David Crosby has a long history in music, having achieved success both as a solo performer and as a member of some notable and well-known groups. As one of the founding members of the band the Byrds—the very same Byrds who gave Bob Dylan his breakthrough single, “Mr. Tambourine Man”—his career began in 1964.
Later on, he went on to form a new band called Crosby, Stills, & Nash, which went on to win the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.
Dick Van Dyke – $50 Million
No matter how serious the audience is, there is a good chance that they will be in fits of laughter and have tears streaming down their faces in no time if they are watching a film or television program starring Dick Van Dyke.
Caractacus Potts from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Dick Van Dyke as Bert the chimney sweep in one of Disney’s most well-known movies, Mary Poppins, are two of this funny man’s most memorable roles.
Ed Asner – Worth $10 Million
Ed Asner, who is 90 years old, is still going strong. Asner’s remarkable and well-known career started in the 1950s, so he has been working hard for nearly 70 years!
Asner’s big break came while playing the show’s star, Lou Grant, on the Lou Grant Show. Because of how popular that program was, it eventually gave rise to the Mary Tyler Moore Show, in which Asner also appeared. His work is still being done today.
Eileen Atkins – Worth $1-5 Million
Although she is known to audiences as Eileen Atkins, the Royal Court refers to her by her legal name, Dame Eileen June Atkins DBE. The DBE stands for the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, which she received for her numerous acting achievements.
Aside from being called Dame, her accomplishments also gave her an Emmy, a BAFTA, and three Olivier Awards. She is also a writer as well as co-creator of a number of the most well-liked TV dramas in Britain.
Gavin MacLeod – Worth $10 Million
Gavin MacLeod, a Hollywood Golden Age actor who made his screen debut in 1950, has enjoyed success after success and shows little to no sign of slowing down. He starred in television shows like The Mary Tyler Moore Show in addition to appearing in Hollywood classic movies like The Thousand Plane Raid, The Sword Of Ali Baba, and A Man Called Gannon.
However, his most well-known role was that of Captain Merrill Stubing on the hit television series The Love Boat, which received positive reviews from critics.
George Hamilton – Worth $20 Million
When George Hamilton first started acting, it didn’t take him long to receive praise and recognition. In fact, Hamilton won his first Golden Globe for his very first role—a remarkable achievement in the fiercely competitive world of Hollywood movies!
Critics quickly came to the conclusion that they needed to keep an eye on this bright Hollywood star. A trend that still exists today was established quickly with Hamilton starring in role after role.
Gladys Knight – Worth $28 Million
James Brown and Michael Jackson have been dubbed the Godfather and King of Pop, respectively, and the Empress of Soul, respectively, is the talented Gladys Knight. When considering her legacy, it makes sense why.
She spent the entire 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s at the top of the charts as a performer. Knight has also received seven Grammy Awards personally.
Harry Belafonte – Worth $28 Million
Over 60 years ago, Harry Belafonte entered a recording studio for the first time to create his debut album, Calypso. From the early days of his mid-1950s album up until the present, Belafonte has been a musical phenomenon and a national icon since that fateful day and the release of his 1956 album.
His accolades are numerous as a result. In addition to three Grammy awards, an Emmy, a Tony, and a National Medal of Arts, the artist has received widespread acclaim.
Henry Winkler – Worth $30 Million
Happy Days was regarded as just another television sitcom when Henry Winkler made his debut there. But Winkler’s portrayal of the iconic Arthur “The Fonz” Fonzarelli helped that series win praise from critics and become the most popular program on television at the time.
That signaled success for Winkler, who was then presented with two Golden Globe awards. In addition to this, a memorable TV character was also given to us.
Jack Nicholson – Worth $400 Million
Jack Nicholson is a living legend, and there aren’t many other ways to put it. The man has frequently made his way down the red carpet, both for some of Hollywood’s most well-known productions and once more to accept the accolades bestowed upon him in recognition of his performance.
He frequently attended the Academy Awards, where he received three Oscars and twelve additional nominations. Fans of Nicholson must be disappointed because the renowned actor hasn’t appeared on screen in ten years.
Jane Fonda – Worth $200 Million
Regardless of one’s political views, Jane Fonda is unquestionably an American icon. But it’s obvious that she has been deserving of the recognition given to her as an actress and businesswoman.
No matter what one’s political beliefs are, Jane Fonda is without a doubt a national treasure. But it’s clear that she has earned the accolades bestowed upon her for her work as an actress and a businesswoman.
Jane Powell – Worth $10 Million
If there is one organization to which Jane Powell owes her success, it is probably the major Hollywood studio MGM. Powell joined them as a teenager in the 1940s, and the business loved her so much that they once even made her their poster girl.
She first appeared on stage in musicals, captivating the audience with her voice and poise as a dancer. She has since pursued a variety of projects, such as theater and television programs.
Jayne Kennedy – Worth $2 Million
In the 1980s, Jayne Kennedy was dubbed “the most admired black woman in America” by Coca-Cola, the same Coca-Cola of all the fizzy soft drinks. We can easily understand why the business held that belief. Kennedy initially excelled in beauty pageants, winning the coveted Miss Ohio crown.
Her broad career path following that showcased her range of abilities. Kennedy spent her entire career working as a sports broadcaster and TV personality.
Jerry Mathers – Worth $3 Million
As the titular Beaver Cleaver in the well-known series Leave It To Beaver, Jerry Mathers launched his Hollywood career as a child star (if one can define landing their first role at age 2 as being a “child” star).
Despite the fact that the series’ run came to an end in 1963, Mathers didn’t resume acting until the late 1970s. He first served in the Air Force Reserve Command in between, then transitioned to banking, and finally worked in real estate.
Joan Baez – Worth $11 Million
Joan Baez has more than earned her place as one of the greatest musicians of Hollywood’s Golden Age thanks to a voice and musical talent that have been honed over nearly 60 years of work. She has been releasing albums over the course of her career that cover a wide range of genres, including gospel, country, pop, folk-rock, and even country.
Baez has released 30 albums, and she has done so in an astounding eight different languages, making her music well-known all over the world.
Joan Collins – Worth $30 Million
Nobody who saw Joan Collins perform in her first acting role at the age of nine is likely to have imagined that she would go down in history as a symbol of the Hollywood Golden Age. As a result of her outstanding on-screen performances, she is where she is today and we are where we are.
Her list of Hollywood films is impressive, but it’s debatable whether Alexis Colby from the television drama Dynasty is her greatest role. Dallas, the long-time TV champion, had its reign ended by that series.
Joanne Woodward – Worth $50 million
Before quickly transitioning into a film in 1955, Joanne Woodward appeared in a number of minor television roles throughout the 1950s. The moment Woodward made the transition to the big screen, her career took off and would go on to last for more than 60 years.
Woodward was no stranger to award ceremonies at the time, having won some of the most prestigious acting accolades. These include the BAFTA, the Primetime Emmy, the Golden Globe, and the Oscar.
Joan Plowright – Worth $1-5 Million
When it comes to a variety of media, such as film, television, and stage, Joan Plowright is more than just a star—she is essentially British royalty. The Right Honorable Baroness Olivier, DBE is her full name.
Apparently, her status as Laurence Olivier’s wife outshines even her own title of Baroness, which is as astounding as that title is. Despite her titles, she is a talented actress and one of only four people in history to win one-two Golden Globes in the same calendar year.
Joan Van Ark – $10 Million
Since 1966, Joan Van Ark has made frequent appearances on television and in the theater. After only 5 years of acting professionally, she received her first major award nomination for a Tony, demonstrating her talent right away.
She then took on the role of Valene Ewing in the cast of Dallas, one of television’s most popular programs. The Young and the Restless was one of the popular TV shows she appeared in at the time.
John Amos – Worth $3 Million
Since his appearance on the groundbreaking program Good Times in the 1970s, John Amos’ face has become a familiar one on television. In addition to being well-liked at the time, Good Times was significant because it was the first program to feature a two-parent African American family.
Amos’ work on the program helped to launch his career to new heights; he went on to star in shows like The West Wing, Roots, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Jon Voight – Worth $55 Million
Even though Jon Voight has only received one Academy Award, his four nominations—three of which were for Best Actor—speak to his skill as a Hollywood movie star. His most well-known works, including Midnight Cowboy, Coming Home, Deliverance, and The Champ, received these prestigious awards.
Although he took a brief hiatus as the 1980s gave way to the 1990s, he returned in the early 2000s with parts in a number of highly regarded biographical dramas.
Joyce Randolph – Worth $10 Million
She may go by the name Joyce Randolph, but most people would probably be more familiar with her by another name. She created the unique Trixie Norton from the Honeymooners series, who is incredibly well-known.
Trixie Norton was so well-liked by viewers and critics alike that Randolph jumped at the chance to continue playing her in the Jackie Gleason Show. Randolph hasn’t been seen on screen since 2000, which is unfortunate for any Trixie Norton fans out there.
Judi Dench – Worth $35 Million
When Dame Judi Dench was awarded the second-highest honor of the British Empire, her title was permanently changed to reflect her illustrious career and exceptional talent.
Since 1950, Dame Judi Dench has worked on numerous film and television productions that have received honorable reviews from critics and are well-liked by audiences. Even though Dench is no longer a part of the well-known James Bond series, it doesn’t appear that she is planning to retire.
Karen Grassle – Worth $500,000
Little House on the Prairie, a legendary American television program starring Michael Landon, Melissa Gilbert, Melissa Sue Anderson, and, of course, Karen Grassle, was based on the bestselling Little House books.
For the entire run of the show, she played Caroline Ingalls. She along with the show became a cultural icon in the United States during those ten years. Unfortunately, she hasn’t appeared in many other projects since her time on the show, so she has a lot of opportunities in the future.
Katharine Ross – Worth $5 Million
In Hollywood’s Golden Age, Katharine Ross had the honor of playing the lead in some of the biggest movies. Alternatively, depending on your point of view, Katherine Ross may have had the honor of appearing in these movies.
In any case, Ross became well-known and influential after appearing in the 1967 classic The Graduate alongside none other than Dustin Hoffman. She won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA for her subsequent works, demonstrating her talent.
Keith Richards – Worth $340 Million
In any case, Ross rose to fame and had a significant impact after starring alongside none other than Dustin Hoffman in the 1967 classic The Graduate. For her subsequent works, she received a BAFTA and a Golden Globe, showcasing her talent.
Since the 1960s, when rock n’ roll was in its heyday, Richards has been a music producer in addition to having played in one of the most well-known bands.
Richard Keith – Worth $1 Million
Despite the fact that his name is likely to conjure images of the legendary guitarist Keith Richards, Richard Keith first rose to fame for his portrayal of Little Ricky in the wildly successful I Love Lucy series.
Ironically, Richard Keith was a musician before he was an actor and continued to play with his band up until 2017. But what is his real name? Keith Thibodeaux, he changed it because he discovered that it was difficult for other people to say.
Kenny Rogers – Worth $250 Million
Kenny Rogers is arguably the most well-known country singer in the US, and his name is closely associated with that kind of slow, soulful country music. Rogers started releasing his incredibly well-liked music in the early 1970s, and by the end of the decade, he had sold as many as 100 million records worldwide.
Rogers was a man who seemed to have done it all, so he wouldn’t be limited to being a musician. He was a writer, an actor, and even a businessman. Kenny Rogers tragically passed away in March 2020.
Kim Novak – Worth $15 Million
At first, it appeared that Kim Novak would one day be counted among the great actors of Hollywood. This gifted woman already had several Golden Globes and a star with her name on it on the Hollywood Walk of Fame by the time she was 30 years old.
But then something occurred that shocked even her fervent supporters. She abruptly announced her retirement and claimed that she no longer had any passion for her films. Since then, she has turned to other artistic mediums, particularly photography.
Kirstie Alley – Worth $40 Million
Kirstie Alley was the focus of attention in the 1980s. In 1982, she was cast in her first significant role when she was chosen to portray Saavik in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
Because Star Trek fans adored the character so much, she continued to portray Saavik in subsequent Star Trek movies. But it wasn’t her only endeavor; in 1987, she joined the cast of the venerable television program Cheers, playing Rebecca Howe.
Lee Majors – Worth $15 Million
Lee Majors, who is best known for playing Colonel Steve Austin in The Six Million Dollar Man, could theoretically play himself in a film, but it would have to be called The Fifteen Million Dollar Man.
However, a Major’s role did not end with the Colonel. Other examples include Heath Barkley’s roles in The Big Valley and The Fall Guy as Colt Seavers. According to rumors, Majors also has a film in development called Spring Break ’83.
Lee Merriwether – Worth $1-5 Million
Lee Merriwether began receiving praise and showcasing her talent as early as 1955, but not yet on television or the big screen. Merriwether did, in fact, take home the title of Miss America, a prize that catapulted her into a world of fame and stardom.
Merriwether, however, was more than just a pretty face; throughout the 1960s, her well-known sci-fi roles gave her a large following and led to her winning several Golden Globe awards. After that, her career lasted for 50 years.
Lex Luger – Worth $4.5 Million
Before Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, a legendary wrestler and actor, there was another man who was constantly the star of the show. That man was record-breaker and ring-stylist Lex Luger.
A professional wrestler with such widespread fame that, even after retiring, he consented to rejoin the WWE to work behind the scenes. Luger had a successful wrestling career, but he was also a professional football player and bodybuilder.
Linda Ronstadt – Worth $130 Million
It’s challenging to classify Linda Ronstadt as just one kind of opera singer. Since Ronstadt was such a gifted vocalist and performer, she put out albums that belonged in genres like rock, country, opera, and even Latin.
This multi-talented star not only released this genre of music, but she also received consistent praise for it. Not just one, but an incredible ten Grammy Awards went to Ronstadt. Ronstadt was also awarded a Tony and a Golden Globe.
Liv Ullmann – Worth $20 Million
This is actress Liv Ullman, for those who don’t know about Scandinavian brethen and their contributions to the arts. Ullman is exceptional because she is a successful actress not only in the United States, where she received an Academy Award in 1972, but also in her native Norway.
One of the most well-known Swedish filmmakers, Ingmar Bergman, is thought to have been inspired by Ullman. Ullman is currently a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF.
Luke Halpin – Worth $2 Million
Luke Halpin entered the spotlight at the age of eight and started entertaining the public on the big screen. Despite the fact that Halpin’s career spanned a full 30 years, there is one part for which he will be best known.
Of course, Sandy Ricks from the wildly successful Flipper movies plays that part. Halpin had the good fortune to work with dolphins for the majority of his acting career in addition to having the good fortune to be an actor his entire life.
Max Baer Jr. – $50 Million
The majority of actors, including some of the best, are afraid of something. That something is, of course, typecasting, or the practice of an actor whose career revolves around playing the same character in different roles because they are so skilled at doing so.
Max Baer Jr. received praise for his portrayal of the naive Jethro Bodine in the wildly successful television series The Beverly Hillbillies, but he was typecast into that part.
Mel Brooks – Worth $85 Million
One name stands out when discussing the comedy legends who have contributed to the success of Hollywood today. Of course, that person is none other than the illustrious Mel Brooks.
Mel Brooks began acting in the 1950s, but he also worked as a writer, producer, director, and even a composer. His first notable achievement was penning the comedy Get Smart, which caused a major stir across the country.
Michael Caine – Worth $75 Million
Since he was only 20 years old, Michael Caine (or, as we should be saying, Sir Michael Caine) has become a cherished movie and television mainstay. People from all generations can therefore name a movie with Michael Caine in it, whether it be Alfie, Zulu, The Italian Job, or any of the Christian Bale-starring Batman movies.
Caine’s talent is so evident that he has joined the group of actors who have received Academy Award nominations for five years running.
Michael York – Worth $22 Million
Michael York exuded a natural talent for performing. When York appeared on stage in a Shakespeare play in 1967, all skepticism seemed to be dispelled. Michael York intended to work as an actor.
Before playing Logan in the hugely successful Logan’s Run, he continued to perform in plays and other on-stage productions. York continues to work on a variety of projects and frequently makes appearances as a guest star on shows like The Simpsons.
Morgan Freeman – Worth $20 Million
One of the most recognizable actors in Hollywood today, Morgan Freeman is known for his commanding, deep voice in movies. But for a while, it seemed as though Freeman wouldn’t succeed in the entertainment industry.
Freeman began acting in 1964, but his big break didn’t come until he received his first Oscar nomination in 1987. Even then, it could be argued that he didn’t really break out as a star until his part in The Shawshank Redemption.