Sofia Vergara is the highest-earning actress on TV for the sixth - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Sofia Vergara is the highest-earning actress on TV for the sixth year in a row

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By Liam Mathews,

To paraphrase Jay-Z, Sofia Vergara ain't a businesswoman, she's a business, woman.

For the sixth year in a row, the Modern Family star has topped the Forbes list of highest-paid TV actresses, raking in $41.5 million from June 1, 2016 to June 1, 2017 before taxes and management fees. And perhaps even more impressively, her hefty Modern Family salary only accounts for about a quarter of her income, with the bulk of it coming from endorsement deals with Head and Shoulders, Pepsico and Covergirl and licensing deals that get her name on perfume, furniture and a coffee maker and earn her a share of the profits.

Her earnings dwarf the second-place finisher, The Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco, who earned about $26 million. She earns more per episode than Vergara but doesn't have as many endorsement deals.

There's a steep drop to third place, where Grey's Anatomy's Ellen Pompeo and The Mindy Project's Mindy Kaling are tied with $13 million. Pompeo's income mostly comes from Grey's, while much of Kaling's comes from movies and an endorsement deal with McDonald's.

Most of the women on the list are the stars of long-running broadcast series. There's no better way to make money as an actor than starring on a show that does a lot of episodes for a long time. There are only two streaming stars -- Kaling and House of Cards' Robin Wright -- and no cable stars. Cable and streaming actors often earn more per episode but do a lot fewer episodes.

The list of male actors for 2017 is not out yet, but last year it was The Big Bang Theory's Jim Parsons, who earned $25.5 million, and will likely top the list again this year, especially now that he's added Young Sheldon to his portfolio.

Here's the full list.

1. Sofia Vergara - $41.5 million
2. Kaley Cuoco - $26 million
3. (tie) Ellen Pompeo/Mindy Kaling - $13 million
5. Mariska Hargitay - $12.5 million
6. Julie Bowen - $12 million
7. Kerry Washington - $11 million
8. Priyanka Chopra - $10 million
9. Robin Wright - $9 million
10. Pauley Perrette - $8.5 million


 

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