Ashton Kutcher Now Highest-Paid Sitcom Star With $700,000 Per Show
Ashton Kutcher is making bank!
When the 33-year-old actor steps into character as Walden Schmidt on Two and a Half Men's September 19 premiere, he'll also take on the role of TV's highest-paid sitcom star.
According to a new TV Guide report -- featured in the magazine's August 11 issue -- Kutcher will earn approximately $700,000 per episode of the CBS hit. While his take is impressive, it's far less than that of his predecessor, Charlie Sheen, who enjoyed a payday of $1.2 million per episode of the half-hour comedy.
If you ask CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler, though, Kutcher's paycheck is well deserved. "There is great value in hiring an actor like Ashton Kutcher," Tassler told reporters at a recent Television Critics Association panel. "He is an extraordinarily professional, talented, funny, gifted actor who comes with a tremendous amount of commitment and enthusiasm, embraced by an extraordinarily talented cast."
But Kutcher's take is a far cry from that of other, lesser-known talent, who typically earn $125,000 an episode for their work on a network primetime series, according to TV Guide. Actors on a cable series can net as much as $150,000. "Times that by 22, [and] you can maintain a pretty good lifestyle based on what you were making in features but now you're not," an executive familiar with this year's salary negotiations tells the magazine.
When this fall's new slate of programming premieres in September, some stars will come at a bargain to networks. For his new role as a CSI series regular, industry vet Ted Danson will earn $225,000 an episode, while 24 mainstay Keifer Sutherland is said to net the same for his midseason return to TV on the FOX drama Touch.
Tell Us: Does Ashton Kutcher deserve $700,000 per episode of Two and a Half Men?
Fergie, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Heidi Klum all get an F on this week's Fashion Offenders.Watch Video »
Diva Double Date
Beyonce and Alicia Keys double date with their famous hubbies on today's Celebs Gone Social.Watch Video »
Where Are They?
See what the cast of "American Beauty" is up to today.Watch Video »
J.Lo's Mini Me
Jennifer Lopez shares an adorable photo of her look-alike daughter, plus more celebritots on social media on today's Celebs Gone Social.Watch Video »
Prince Harry, Jessica Alba and more stars who threw out the first pitch at baseball games.Watch Video »
Sofia Vergara poses in a revealing neon bikini while her "Modern Family" castmates hit the beach in Australia on Celebs Gone Social.Watch Video »