Sofia Vergara claims the title of television’s highest paid actress for the third year in a row, ranking in approximately $37 million per year.
Vergara didn’t just barely scrape into this spot, however; according to Forbes, she pocketed around $24 million more than TV’s second top-earning actress, Mariska Harigtay from Law and Order: SVU.
As the Latin bombshell on the award-winning comedy Modern Family, Vergara’s paycheck is the same as the rest of the cast: a reported $325,000 per episode.
So how does Vergara out-earn every actress in Hollywood by tens of millions of dollars each year? The answer is simple: Vergara is a savvy businesswoman.
The bulk of Vergara’s annual income comes from endorsement and licensing deals with companies like Diet Pepsi, Kmart, Cover Girl, AT&T, Head & Shoulders, and Synthroid.
Vergara is also the co-founder of Latin World Entertainment, a multi-million dollar media empire that specializes in management, production, and marketing for Latino talent.
LatinWe has become a financial powerhouse thanks to Vergara’s clever marketing strategies, and it is one of the primary reasons why the Colombian actress brings in even more money than Ashton Kutcher, TV’s highest paid actor with a $26 million salary.
Vergara has come a long way since moving from Colombia to the United States in 1996 as an unknown model.
She rose to fame on Spanish-language television and eventually crossed over to English-language television as well, and now she is one of the most successful stars in Hollywood.
The other actresses that rose to the top of Forbes’ pay list included Mariska Hargitay at $13 million, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting at $11 million, and Cobie Smulders, Ellen Pompeo, and Julianna Marguiles tied for fourth place with $10 million each.
Even if these actresses’ salaries seem lucrative, they pale in comparison to what the top-earning male actors brought in last year.
The top 10 female TV actresses earned a combined $140 million between June 2013 and June 2014, while the top 10 male TV actors earned a combined total of $214 million.
By Gabrielle Meyer