Forbes has released its annual list of highest paid actors. Coming in at #1 for the first time in his career: Mark Wahlberg, who made $68 million over the last 12 months. This is mostly due to his earnings from Transformers: The Last Knight and Deepwater Horizon which both underperformed at the box office although he gets paid upfront. Which totally makes sense. You give him a huge cheque thinking he’ll bring in even more money. And he doesn’t. Like when an athlete signs a new lucrative contract and ends up not performing, coming in with the worst stats of his career, the next season. Happens all the time.

I know that Marky Mark is popular. Like, I’m aware that this is a fact, even though that fact exists outside of my own personal spaces. But while I’m not challenging that people, a lot of people, enjoy him, I still don’t understand why. Apart from when he modelled underwear, what is the argument for Mark Wahlberg? Serious question, please explain it to me. I might pitch this to Duana for the next episode of Show Your Work.


Anyway, despite being #1 on the Forbes list, Mark is actually in a mini-slump right now, box office-wise. Deepwater Horizon, Patriots Day, and Transformers: The Last Knight, representing his theatrical output over the last two years, were all busts. Which puts some pressure on Daddy’s Home 2, with Will Ferrell and also Mel Gibson who’s playing Mark’s dad (ugh), which comes out in November, the week after Thor: Ragnarok and the week before Justice League. Is there room for Mark Wahlberg in between superheroes?

To go back to that Forbes list, last week it was announced that Emma Stone was the highest paid actress, with $26 million earned, which is less than Ryan Gosling who’s listed at #14 on the actor list. Emma made less than half of what Marky Mark did. And, combined, the top 10 actors on the list made $488.5 million which is more than double the combined total of $172.5 of the top 10 actresses. That gender pay gap though. It’s pretty robust.

Here’s Marky Mark the other day, driving his Rolls Royce to lunch at Spago. What is this? 1985?