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10 Highest Paid Dead Celebrities in 2017
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Summary: Forbes released its annual list of highest-earning dead celebrities. 

For Halloween, CBS released an animated special featuring Michael Jackson’s music called Michael Jackson’s Halloween. Although the late King of Pop died in 2009, he is continuing to entertain fans and earn millions. According to ForbesJackson made $75 million this year with his TV special, publishing catalog, Las Vegas show, and more; and thus he earned the magazine’s top spot on the highest-paid dead celebrities of 2017.


In second place, late golfer Arnold Palmer earned $40 million with his Palmer apparel and AriZona beverages. Peanuts creator Charles Schultz was next on the list. His characters were licensed by companies such as MetLife which helped contribute to his multi-million dollar earnings for his estate.

The others on the ranking such as Elvis Presley and Bob Marley have been earning posthumously for years, but Tom Petty, who died earlier this month, was a new entry. The late rocker earned $20 million this year because of touring, and according to Forbes, he and his band earned up to $1 million a night.

Forbes publishes the highest-earning dead celebrities list each year and culls information from a variety of sources.

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“Our list measures pretax income from October 15, 2016 through October 15, 2017 before deducting cuts for agents, managers and lawyers. Sources include Nielsen SoundScan, IMDB, Pollstar Pro and interviews with celebrity estate experts,” Forbes stated.

The publication noted that Frank Zappa didn’t make 2017’s list but that his estate’s upcoming plan to allow the singer’s hologram to tour could generate millions in revenue.

“Frank Zappa didn’t make the list, but perhaps he will soon. His son Ahmet recently announced plans to bring the rock star back in the form of a hologram-like illusion. The phantom Zappa will hit the road, most likely in 2018, in partnership with the firm Eyellusion. The goal is to make “the bizarre world of Frank come to life,” says the younger Zappa. “And I wake up every single day excited,”” Forbes wrote.

It is noted that although Michael Jackson was first on the list again, his 2017 earnings were a fraction of what he made in 2016. Last year, the mega-earner brought in $825 million, money mostly brought in from the sale of his music catalog to Sony.

Forbes’ Top-Earning Dead Celebrities– 2017

10. Albert Einstein $10 Million

9. John Lennon $12 Million

8. Dr. Seuss $16 Million

7. Prince $18 Million

6. Tom Petty $20 Million

5. Bob Marley $23 Million

4. Elvis Presley $35 Million

3. Charles Schulz $38 Million

2. Arnold Palmer $40 Million

1. Michael Jackson $75 Million

What do you think of this list? Let us know in the comments below.


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