Natalie Portman is the most bankable star in Hollywood. This according to Forbes, which has come up with a clunky algorithm to determine which actors and actresses provide the biggest bang for their bucks.
Portman finished ahead of franchise fixtures Kristen Stewart, Shia LaBeouf, Robert Pattinson and Daniel Radcliffe. Per Forbes, the “Black Swan” actress earns her employers $42.70 per each dollar paid. Here’s how that figure was determined:
We looked at the last three films each actor starred in over the last three years that opened in more than 2,000 theaters, calculating the return on investment for the studios who pay his (or her) salary. We didn’t count movies where the actor was in a supporting or large ensemble role and we didn’t count animated movies. The actors who score well on this list tend to have small paydays and star in highly profitable movies.
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As Forbes notes, that means “Thor,” which Portman co-starred in as the female lead, was not counted among her three films; “Black Swan,” “No Strings Attached” and “Your Highness,” however, were. That’s curious, if only because Portman’s role in “Your Highness” — which co-starred James Franco, Danny McBride and Zooey Deschanel — could also be considered of the supporting variety. (Of course, adding “Thor” to Portman’s tally would have knocked off “Black Swan,” her most profitable film.)
This is to say nothing of the fact that the wide-release opening of “Black Swan” on Dec. 17, 2010 covered just 959 theaters, and not 2,000 theaters. To be fair, the film eventually landed in over 2,000 theaters, grossing $106 million at the domestic box office and $329 million worldwide.
Regardless of those issues, the list proves that Portman has become one of Hollywood’s most budget-friendly A-list stars. Her last appearance onscreen was in the aforementioned “Thor”; Portman will next be seen in “Thor: The Dark World” as well as the Terrence Malick films “Knights of the Cups” and an untitled Malick project previously called “Lawless.”