Is Robert Downey Jr. actually turning into Tony Stark?
Disney and Marvel’s “The Avengers” has already made over $1 billion worldwide, and Downey Jr. looks to be getting a major pay day for his high-flying, wise cracking role as Iron Man.
His paycheck could be as high as $50 million, once box-office bonuses and backend compensation are tallied, according to The Hollywood Reporter. His cast mates will receive significantly less dough once the dust has cleared.
One of the selling points of “The Avengers” was Marvel and Disney’s ability to cut deals with a sprawling cast of well-known faces (Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo) and rising stars (Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddleston) without breaking the bank on any big name superstars.
However, as the star of 2008’s “Iron Man” (nearly $600 million worldwide), Downey was able to cut a back-end deal for subsequent films featuring himself as the character (including “The Avengers”). After that, Marvel was sure to drive harder bargains with the stars of the solo superhero films that followed in the wake of “Iron Man’s” success.
Hemsworth (“Thor”), Evans (“Captain America”), Renner (who first appeared as Hawkeye in “Thor”) and Ruffalo (as the latest Hulk) all signed on for smaller upfront fees and lesser backend deals. It’s estimated that they’ll each pick up between $2 million and $3 million for “The Avengers,” while the more established names Jackson and Johansson were able to negotiate slightly higher fees.
Meanwhile, “The Avengers” is showing no sign of slowing down at the global box office.
It could very well pass the final “Harry Potter” film’s $1.32 billion worldwide gross, which would place it at No. 3 on the all-time hit list behind James Cameron’s one-two punch of “Avatar” and “Titanic.”