June 30, 2016


Scarlett Johansson Is the Highest-Grossing Actress Ever (And Behind 9 Dudes on Male-Dominated List)

Samir Hussein/Getty Images
Samir Hussein/Getty Images

The essential establishment that is Box Office Mojo just used its infinite data archives to compile a list of the highest-grossing stars in Hollywood. (So the folks whose movies have earned the most, not the highest-paid performers.) And Scarlett Johansson is No. 1—for women. She's actually No. 10 on the list, and the next actress, Cameron Diaz, doesn't show up until No. 19.

It's fabulous that ScarJo's movies have grossed $3.33 billion globally since she debuted in 1994 with the weird, bad Elijah Wood movie North. Her biggest works are, naturally, her Marvel joints, although The Jungle Book and Lucy have also been big successes. She's behind her fellow Marvel-ers Samuel L. Jackson (No. 2) and Robert Downey, Jr. (No. 5), but, at just 31 years of age, she's ahead of been-in-biz-wayyy-longer men like Bruce Willis (No. 13), Robert De Niro (No. 18), Matt Damon (No. 20) and Will Smith (No. 24).

This doesn't even come close, though, to masking the fact that studios don't cast nearly enough women in big blockbusters. And of course, you can't talk about the lack of representation without acknowledging the wage gap in Hollywood and in real life, which seems to persist unchecked despite continually advancing media exposure. As Jezebel reminds us, Scarlett Johansson spoke with Cosmopolitan about this in April:

“I am very fortunate. I make a really good living, and I’m proud to be an actress who’s making as much as many of my male peers at this stage. I think every woman has [been underpaid], but unless I’m addressing it as a larger problem, for me to talk about my own personal experience with it feels a little obnoxious. It’s part of a larger conversation about feminism in general.”

After Diaz and her $3.03 billion, the next actresses on the highest-grossing list are:

–Helena Bonham Carter at No. 26 with $2.82 billion; thanks, Harry Potter
–Cate Blanchett at No. 29, $2.8 billion; much appreciated, Lord of the Rings
–Julia Roberts at No. 30, $2.73 billion; cheers, Ocean's Eleven
–Elizabeth Banks at No. 31 with $2.73 billion; what up, Hunger Games
–Emma Watson at No. 32 with $2.68 billion; you rule, Potter

So that's two actresses in the top 19 and seven in the top 32. Do better, Hollywood, producers, directors, world.