Leonardo DiCaprio tops Johnny Depp as highest-paid actor

Leo’s #1.

When it comes to getting green in Hollywood, Leonardo DiCaprio is at the moment head and shoulders above the rest. Forbes recently released their list of the highest-paid actors from the past year, and it contains quite a few familiar faces — as well as some substantial proof that starring in a summer blockbuster is really the key to breaking bank in this business.

Here are the magazine’s top five, along with some reasons why they managed to be so successful:

5. Tom Hanks ($35 million) – While his recent live-action film project (see “Larry Crowne”) has not been a complete and total success, you do have to remember that the guy voiced the principal character of Woody in “Toy Story 3.” When you have the career that Tom Hanks has managed to have in the past few decades, odds are you going to be making plenty of cash for every project.

4. Will Smith ($36 million) – More than anything here, you have to cite his producing efforts on “The Karate Kid” as one of the reasons he is on the list. Smith has turned into a supporter as of late for his children, who are actor / rapper Jaden and singer Willow. (He does have a role coming up in “Men in Black III.”)

3. Adam Sandler ($40 million) – Yes, fart jokes really are worth that much. Sandler not only starred in two recent films (in “Grown Ups” and “Just Go With It”), but he also owns the Happy Madison company that produced the projects. In other words, he makes money every way possible.

2. Johnny Depp ($50 million) – Being Captain Jack Sparrow in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise is just one reason Depp is ranked so high. The actor also voiced the title character in “Rango” earlier this year, and also starred in 2010’s big-budget “The Tourist” (which performed strongly overseas after flopping in America).

1. Leonardo DiCaprio ($77 million) – In 2010, Leo truly had the best of both worlds. Not only did he star in two movies (“Shutter Island” and “Inception”) that received a lion’s share of praise from critics around the country, but they also turned into massive hits at the box office. Leo’s also been in the tabloids lately thanks to his relationship with Blake Lively. (While that doesn’t make money on its own, it does show just how interested people are in everything he does.)

Which person on this list surprises you the most?

Photo: Colin Chou

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