[artist id="3061469"]Lady Gaga[/artist] has won a lot of accolades during the past year and met some pretty impressive dignitaries, but crashing the Forbes magazine annual World's Most Powerful Celebrities list puts her in some truly rarified company.
The singer, who launched her latest iteration of her never-ending Monster Ball Tour in Montreal on Monday night, debuts on the list this year at #4. She landed there thanks to high marks for her Web visibility (#1 on the list) and a $62 million haul between June 2009 and June 2010, $31 million of which came from touring (after a gross of $95 million), with much of the rest courtesy of deals with Virgin Mobile, Polaroid, Monster Cable and MAC.
Gaga joins a top 10 that is dominated by women, including the once-again #1, Oprah Winfrey, who retook her top rank thanks to $315 million in earnings after ceding it last year to Angelina Jolie (now #18). The list ranks celebs based on earnings over the previous 12 months, as well as visibility in print, TV, radio, online and social media.
[artist id="1236911"]Beyoncé[/artist] slipped up two spots to #4 this year, with $86 million in grosses thanks to a 93-date world tour, deals with Nintendo and L'Oreal and her House of Dereon fashion line. The still resurgent Britney Spears leaped from #13 to #6 this year, banking $64 million, most of it thanks to a world tour that grossed $130 million and deals with Elizabeth Arden and Candie's.
Madonna slipped seven spots down from last year's #3 ranking to #10, but at 52, she still had the fourth-highest-grossing tour of the year, which rolled up more than $138 million in gross receipts, as well as significant publishing royalties, including cash from an all-Madge episode of "Glee."
More than 30 years into their career, U2 went from zero to #7 on the list, mostly courtesy of a massive — currently mothballed — world tour that raked in more than $311 million in gross box office, as well as lucrative merchandise sales, copious radio play and a steady-selling back catalog that earned them more than $130 million.
With a $210 million payday from his #1 smash "Avatar," director James Cameron (#3) had a very good year, unlike disgraced golfer Tiger Woods, who hits #5 with $105 million in earnings amid high press rankings, mostly for his infidelity scandal. The top 10 is rounded out by Oscar-winning actress Sandra Bullock (#8, $56 million), who made headlines for having two hit movies, "The Proposal" and "The Blind Side," as well a divorce from ex-Jesse James. And at #9 is Johnny Depp, who banked $75 million, mostly due to his work in "Alice in Wonderland," which grossed $1 billion worldwide, making Depp the only actor to headline two billion-dollar films.
Taylor Swift made it onto the list for the first time, at #12, thanks to her status as the most-played artist on radio in 2009, multi-platinum album sales, and big endorsement deals with Sony and CoverGirl that netted her $45 million. She's just ahead of Miley Cyrus (#13), who took in a not-too-shabby $48 million. Beyoncé's other half, Jay-Z, also made a giant leap this year, jumping from #32 to #15 with a hit album, his investment in the 40/40 club chain and the Broadway show "Fela!," the New Jersey Nets, and the Blueprint 3 tour, which grossed more than $1 million per show.
Also new on the list this year are the Black Eyed Peas, who debuted at #16 thanks to a $48 million year pumped up by sponsorship deals with Target, Honda, Bacardi and Apple. Singer Pink crashed the party at #27 in her debut year, with $44 million, much of it courtesy of her smash international tour.
Other musicians on the list include: Bruce Springsteen (#17), Coldplay (#35), the Jonas Brothers (#40), Diddy (#68), Lil Wayne (#74) and Akon (#80).
"Twilight" star Robert Pattinson also makes his first appearance on the list, coming in at #50 with $17 million in earnings, followed by co-star Kristen Stewart at #66 with $12 million in earnings. The woman who started it all, "Twilight" author Stephenie Meyer, hits the #59 spot with $40 million in pay thanks to the $1 billion in box office the movies have earned so far and continued strong sales of the books from the series.
Former "American Idol" judge Simon Cowell earned a spot behind Madonna at #11 with a hefty $80 million payday, while fellow "Idol" cohort Ellen DeGeneres (#23) earned $55 million from her stint on the reality show and her syndicated daily talker. "Idol" host Ryan Seacrest weighs in at #44 with $51 million from his variety of TV hosting gigs, radio show and producer credits on reality shows.
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