Judy Sheindlin – more commonly known as Judge Judy – reigns supreme not only in her own courtroom, but also across all of television, reports Forbes magazine.
Pocketing US$147 million pretax last year, Sheindlin is the highest-paid television host, outearning all others.
The sharp-talking daytime judge takes the top spot thanks to her even sharper deal-making skills: Last year she sold the rights to her Judge Judy’s 5,200-episode library, as well as future episodes of the show, to CBS for an estimated $100 million.
Between that pay cheque and the $47 million she gets for hosting Judge Judy and producing Hot Bench, Sheindlin took in triple her typical annual pay cheque. With that added to her bank account, she also became 48th-richest self-made woman in America, with a net worth of $400 million.
Like Sheindlin, all of the members of the list host US daytime television shows.
Forbes TV top 5
1. Judy Sheindlin $147m
2. Ellen DeGeneres $87.5m
3. Phil McGraw $77.5m
4. Ryan Seacrest $74m
5. Steve Harvey $44m