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Nicole Kidman was Hollywood’s highest-paid actress in 2006, nudging America’s sweetheart, Julia Roberts, from the top spot for the first time in five years, according to an annual showbiz earnings list.
Kidman, an Oscar winner for her 2002 portrait of Virginia Woolf in “The Hours,” commands an estimated $16 million to $17 million per movie after a string of daring roles over the past year, entertainment trade paper The Hollywood Reporter said on Wednesday.
Kidman, 39, who was born in Hawaii but grew up in her parents’ native Australia, is currently playing photographer Diane Arbus in the independently produced film “Fur.”
Kidman’s acting fee still falls short of the $20 million per movie earned by fellow Oscar winner Roberts, 39, before the “Erin Brockovich” star put her blockbuster film career on hold to marry and have children.
Roberts gave birth to twins in November 2004 and made her Broadway debut this year in “Three Days of Rain.” But she failed to make the top-10 movie actress salary list this year because she did not star in a live-action film released in 2006, the Hollywood Reporter said.
None of this year’s 10 highest-paid actresses comes close to the $25 million salary commanded by such leading men as Tom Cruise or Jim Carrey for their roles in big-budget Hollywood movies.
The four actresses rounding out the top five on the 2006 list — Reese Witherspoon, Renee Zellweger, Drew Barrymore and Cameron Diaz — earned an estimated $15 million per film each.
They were followed by Halle Berry, Charlize Theron and Angelina Jolie at Nos. 6, 7 and 8 with acting fees of $14 million, $10 million and $10 million, respectively.
“Spider-Man” star Kirsten Dunst, 24, entered the list for the first time at No. 9 with a paycheck of between $8 million and $10 million, just ahead of former “Friends” star Jennifer Aniston, who earned an estimated $8 million per movie.
In addition to Kidman, five of the top 10 actresses were Oscar winners — Witherspoon for “Walk the Line,” Zellweger for “Cold Mountain,” Berry for “Monster’s Ball,” Theron for “Monster” and Jolie for “Girl, Interrupted.”
The list of top-earning actresses is part of The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Women in Entertainment Power 100 issue, which hits newsstands on Dec. 5.