As the highest-rated show in cable TV history – an astonishing 17.3 million viewers tuned into its Season 7 premiere in 2017 – zombie phenomenon The Walking Dead has inevitably made some of its long-term actors and actresses rich beyond their wildest dreams.
Focusing on the long-term cast members with multiple seasons under their belt, here’s a look at the Richest The Walking Dead Actors.
DANAI GURIRA ($500,000)
Danai Gurira’s net worth of half-a-million dollars may look like small fry compared to some of her higher-paid colleagues, but it’s still hardly a figure to be sniffed at. Indeed, the Zimbabwean-American actress would be far higher up the list had she joined The Walking Dead cast earlier than the third season.
JOSH MCDERMITT ($2M)
The majority of his $2m net worth has come from the show, but the comedian has also boosted his coffers with a starring role in indie drama Life in Color and a two-episode stint on Mad Men. Before joining the cast of The Walking Dead, McDermitt worked as a radio producer at KNIX and KMLE, reached the semi-finals of Last Comic Standing and played Brandon in the short-lived TV Land sitcom Retired at 35. There have also been parts in TV movies Rehab for Rejects and King of Van Nuys, short films The Pitch and The Third Wheel, and a guest spot on the misjudged ABC comedy Work It.
ALANNA MASTERSON ($2M)
Alanna actually showed up in an episode of the latter herself, but it’s her turn as The Walking Dead’s first LGBT character, Tara Chambler, which has helped her to amass a net worth of $2m. Before joining the cast, Masterson had shown up in frat house comedy drama Greek, sci-fi spin-off Terminator: The Sarah Chroniclesand medical soap Grey’s Anatomy, and played a small-town girl who teaches a stranded city boy various life lessons in indie drama Peach Plum Pear. Since her arrival on the AMC show, she’s also appeared alongside Danny as a Mopey Hipster Girl in Men at Work, and become a regular of Chris Hardwick’s post-TWD chat show, Talking Dead.
SONEQUA MARTIN-GREEN ($2M)
Bumped up to an ever-present after a five-episode stint in the third season, Sonequa Martin-Green has accrued a net worth of $2m thanks to her role as “team player on the outside but a loner on the inside,” Sasha Williams.
LAUREN COHAN ($2M)
Following a one-off appearance in The Bold and the Beautiful and a role in direct-to-DVD sequel Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj, Lauren Cohan then moved onto bigger and better things when she was cast as thief Bela Talbot in long-running hit Supernatural. But her path to a net worth of $2m truly began when she landed the role of fierce former farmer Maggie Greene in the third season of The Walking Dead.
MICHAEL CUDLITZ ($2M)
Michael Cudlitz only arrived as volatile sharp-shooter Abraham Ford in the fourth season of The Walking Dead, but has managed to match the net worth of several of his more long-running cast mates thanks to a prolific body of work stretching back to 1990.
CHANDLER RIGGS ($2M)
Chandler Riggs first worked with The Walking Dead executive producer Gale Anne Hurd aged just seven on 2010 TV movie The Wronged Man. It was this connection which helped him land the role that would make him a multi-millionaire by his mid-teens, Rick Grimes’ semi-sociopath son, Carl.
MELISSA MCBRIDE ($3M)
As The Walking Dead’s longest-running actress, it’s little wonder that Melissa McBride is one of the show’s top earners. The star has amassed a net worth of $3m having played mother figure Carol Peletier since the third episode of the first season, but she has certainly paid her dues.
STEVEN YEUN ($4M)
Best-known as supply runner Glenn Rhee, Seoul-born, Michigan-raised actor Steven Yeun has a rather tasty back-up should his death-defying character ever run out of his nine lives. The star is a major investor in The Bun Shop, a Korean-Mediterranean fusion restaurant in Los Angeles owned by his younger brother Brian.
LENNIE JAMES ($4M)
It’s unlikely that much of Lennie James’ $4m net worth was earned from his performances in The Walking Dead. The British actor, who plays man of peace Morgan Jones, was only upgraded to the main cast of the sixth season after sporadic appearances throughout the previous five.
ANDREW LINCOLN ($8M)
the majority of his $8m net worth has been accumulated thanks to his role as clean-cut sheriff-turned-grizzly badass Rick Grimes, with the star reportedly now receiving a cool $90,000 per episode.
NORMAN REEDUS ($8M)
Jeffrey Dean Morgan ($8M)
Morgan, who plays the fiendish Negan, made his first appearance in “The Walking Dead” in the final episode of season six. Negan is the leader of a vicious band of survivors called The Saviors, and he vows to kill one of Rick’s group heading into season seven.