Forbes reveal top 100 highest paid celebrities of 2017 and it's a devastating reflection of pay inequality

Only 16 women feature on the list

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The Independent Culture

Another year, another Forbes list detailing the highest earning celebrities. And once again, Sean Combs — AKA Diddy — AKA P. Diddy — AKA Puff Daddy — has topped the list, having banked $130 million over 12 months.

Despite not releasing music, Diddy managed to increase his overall wealth to $820 million thanks to a North American headline tour last year, and various releases from other artists under Bad Boy Records.

Coming a close second is Beyoncé, who accumulated $105 million over the year thanks to her lucrative ‘Formation’ tour and the release of Lemonade. Her husband, Jay Z, who she is expecting twins with later this year, came in 55th partly thanks to TIDAL.

Author JK Rowling shot to third place with $95 million, having released Harry Potter and the Cursed Child last year, along with writing the screenplay for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Close behind Rowling comes Drake with $94 million, mainly thanks to relentless touring, while Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo ($93 million) rounds off the top five.

A shockingly low number of women made the list, with only 16 featuring in total. That’s one more than last year and a devastating reflection of inequality in the entertainment industry. Cumulatively, the top women made $822.5 million, down from the $892.5 million of last year.

Notably, not one female actor made the list, whereas ten male actors did, including Adam Sandler, Jackie Chan, Kevin Heart, and Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan. Jennifer Lawrence almost made the cut, but due to only being paid for one mainstream feature — Red Sparrow — in the last 12 months, fell below the lowest of the 100.

According to Forbes, income from streaming services has surged 118 percent over the year, singer The Weeknd reaping the benefits and coming sixth with $92 million, partly thanks to 5.5 billion streams over the last two years. 

Rounding off the top ten are American radio and television host Howard Stern ($90 million), British band — and last year’s Glastonbury headliners — Coldplay ($88 million), author James Patterson ($87 million) and basketball superstar LeBron James ($86 million). 

The largest fall year-on-year is Taylor Swift, whose paycheque fell from $170 million to $44 million, mainly due to the 'Bad Blood' singer not touring. 

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