The most successful comedians in the world can make anyone laugh, but they’re the ones laughing all the way to the bank. Top stars like Jerry Seinfeld and Ellen DeGeneres earn hundreds of millions for their work in front of the camera, while comedic creators like Matt Stone and Trey Parker, or Matt Groening, make hundreds of millions animating comedy TV series.
With data from CelebrityNetWorth, here are the richest comedians in the world, ranked by net worth.
Larry David — Net Worth: $400 Million
From his days working on “Seinfeld” to his starring role in “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” Larry David seems to have a lot to complain about, but the comedian is worth an estimated $400 million, so it’s hard to relate to his troubles.
David Letterman — Net Worth: $400 Million
At the height of his fame, CelebrityNetWorth points out, David Letterman could pull down $50 million a year through syndication of his popular late night show. With a strong following since the premiere of “Late Night with David Letterman” in 1982, the comedian has had plenty of time to build up a considerable fortune.
Adam Sandler — Net Worth: $420 Million
Adam Sandler has made plenty of bad movies, but when he’s good, he’s good. Classics like “The Waterboy,” “Happy Gilmore,” and “The Wedding Singer” still fill TV slots, and Sandler has won praise for more serious roles recently like his star turn in 2019’s “Uncut Gems.”
Jay Leno — Net Worth: $450 Million
Eternal rival to David Letterman, Jay Leno comes out ahead in the contest for total cash. After working his way up through stand-up, Leno got the gig hosting “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” on NBC in 1992, which he continued until 2009, earning a $320 million salary.
Byron Allen — Net Worth: $450 Million
While his name might not be as familiar as some of the other stars on this list, but Bryon Allen came up alongside Leno and Letterman, beginning as a stand-up comedian and moving to late night TV writing. But his real genius was growing behind the scenes, allowing him to launch Entertainment Studios, which today produces 30 nationally syndicated programs.
Ellen DeGeneres — Net Worth: $500 Million
Ellen DeGeneres has had her ups and downs over the course of her career, even earning a Medal of Freedom from President Obama. Through “Ellen” and then “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” she has also made a huge fortune and established herself as one of the top names in comedy of all time.
Trey Parker — Net Worth: $600 Million
Along with Matt Stone (below), Trey Parker helped create the comedy behemoth that is “South Park,” one of the longest running TV series of all time, and the Tony-winning “Book of Mormon.” Not bad for a couple kids from CU Boulder.
Matt Groening — Net Worth: $600 Million
Matt Groening’s name appears in the credits to (nearly) every episode of “The Simpsons,” the longest running primetime TV show ever. As the creator and creative mind behind much of the show’s iconic comedy, Groening is a seemingly endless source of comedic wit and grace, brining his talents to other notable projects like “Futurama” and Netflix’s “Disenchantment.”
Matt Stone — Net Worth: $700 Million
Like Trey Parker, but a little bit richer, Matt Stone is just as wrapped up in his famous animated series, voicing several characters and using real life family members for inspiration.
Jerry Seinfeld — Net Worth: $950 Million
These days, Jerry Seinfeld is almost as famous for being rich as he is for his long-running show. As the top earner on “Seinfeld,” he pulled in a million dollars per episode, and that’s not to mention all the royalties since.