Top-Earning Dead Celebrities John Lennon, George Harrison and Elvis Presley.
It’s often been said that death can be the ultimate career move. But for our most iconic celebrities, the money can keep rolling into their estate long after they’ve gone. A new list from Forbes tracks the top-earning dead celebrities, with some classic rockers placing high on the list.
Perhaps fittingly, the King of Rock, Elvis Presley, is the list’s top rocker, at 3rd place overall with $55 million. This figure comes from sales of his multitude of reissues, the now-closed ‘Viva Elvis’ Cirque du Soleil show in Las Vegas and the many people who make a pilgrimage to Graceland.
The two Beatles who are no longer with us also made the list. John Lennon‘s estate will have to continue imagining no possessions, because, having made $12 million (6th place), they can buy whatever they want. And with $5.5 million entering their coffers (13th place), George Harrison‘s survivors can continue living in the material world for generations to come.
Three other musical legends rounded out the Top 15. Michael Jackson (2nd) earned $145 million. Reggae icon Bob Marley (5th) brought in $17 million and Richard Rodgers, composer of many of those wonderful old songs that Rod Stewart sings now, was in 12th place with $6 million.
Leading the list was actress was actress Elizabeth Taylor with $210 million. However, much of her fortune last year was the result of an estate auction, which brought in $184 million, so she is unlikely to repeat next year.