General News

Aniston Ousts Spears on Forbes Top 100 List

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Jun 20, 2003 | 1:34pm EDT

One of America's sweethearts has replaced a pop princess in the celebrity hierarchy.

Friends star Jennifer Aniston took the top spot on Forbes magazine's Top 100 Celebrity List away from last year's winner Britney Spears, who did not even make it on the list this year. Aniston earned $35 million last year and appeared on more magazine covers than any other celebrity, Reuters reports.

"Good press or bad press, all press is equal in our eyes," said Forbes editor Peter Kafka, whose magazine compiles the list by factoring in a combination of celebrities' earnings, press clippings, radio and TV coverage and web hits. "By dollar value, Britney did not have a big album or a big tour, the proponents that usually land celebrities on the list."

Spears had a less than banner year in 2002, following her huge successes in previous years with the hit album Oops!..I Did It Again and subsequent concert tour. Her string of bad press in 2002 included the release of her screen debut, the critical and commercial failure Crossroads as well as her messy breakup with N'Sync-er Justin Timberlake.

Kafka told Reuters Aniston, whose husband Brad Pitt did not make the list, was a bit of a surprise. "Aniston's marriage may have helped to propel her to 13 covers, but she is still one of the highest paid actresses in Hollywood," he said.

Bad-boy rappers Eminem and Dr. Dre tied for No. 2, each also earning $35 million but with a huge number--2 million, to be exact--of web hits to back them up. Golfer Tiger Woods slipped from second to third, even though he earned $78 million--$9 million more than last year.

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck can be now known as one of Hollywood's hottest new power couples, taking the fifth and seventh spots on the list with a combined income of $65 million, Reuters reports.

Rounding out the top 10 were movie director Steven Spielberg (4), ex-Beatle Paul McCartney (6), Oprah Winfrey (8), Tom Hanks (9) and The Rolling Stones (10).

Other notables included Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, who came in at 15, up from her standing at 34 last year. Rowling's earnings increased by about $90 million, up from $41.8 million. The issue hit the newsstands Thursday.

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