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Beyonce and Jay-Z are the world’s highest-paid celebrity couple

Al Bello / Getty Images file

Jay-Z and Beyonce became parents to a baby girl on Saturday night.

By Anderson Antunes, Forbes contributor

It’s been a tough year for celebrity couples. From Katy Perry and Russell Brand to Heidi Klum and Seal to Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher and, ultimately, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes, the love affairs of the rich and famous seem to be falling apart everywhere these days. Still, there are some couples out there in Tinseltown and beyond who have not only managed to stay strong but are also laughing all the way to the bank together.

Take Beyonce Knowles and Jay-Z, for example. Last year’s runners-up on the list of The World’s Highest-Paid Celebrity Couples, the duo has now climbed one spot to top this year’s ranking. Knowles, who took a break from her hectic touring schedule in 2011 to give birth to daughter Blue Ivy Carter, still collects big paychecks from old hits. Besides, the singer’s new album went platinum in the U.S., not to mention her non-musical ventures and endorsement deals, which all helped to bring her total earnings between may 1, 2011 and may 1, 2012 to $40 million, according to data from the latest Celebrity 100 list.

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And as the male half of music’s first couple, Jay-Z isn’t far behind his wife. The hip-hop mogul made millions from “Watch the Throne,” his musical collaboration with pal Kanye West, and even more from the tour that followed. Add to that a bevy of non-musical enterprises such as ad firm Translation and cosmetics company Carol’s Daughter and the result is a staggering $38 million that he has brought home in twelve months, putting the couple’s annual income at $78 million.

Coming second on the list are last year’s winners Gisele Bundchen and Tom Brady. The 32-year-old supermodel remains an unparalleled force within the fashion industry, racking up modeling gigs, endorsement deals and independent licensing ventures that bank her some $45 million a year. Brady, on the other side, this year became just the second quarterback after John Elway to lead his team to five Super Bowls, only to be defeated at the hands of the new York Giants and failing to win a fourth ring.

Don’t feel sorry for him, though. Apart from his four-year, $72 million contract extension with the new England Patriots that runs through 2014, Brady is also following on his wife’s footsteps and signing modeling gigs with the likes of under Armour and UGG Boots. On the field and off it, he made $27 million, hauling a total of $72 million along with Bundchen between may 2011 and may 2012.

More from Jay-Z and Beyonce preparing for the Blue Ivy empire

The other royal couple from England, David Beckham and Victoria Beckham grabbed the third place on the list. Still strong on his hard quest to popularize soccer in America, Beckham re-signed with the Los Angeles Galaxy of MLS in January for another two years. but the player’s pot of gold is his endorsement portfolio, which includes Burger King, Sainsbury’s and Samsung. As the world’s highest-paid soccer player, he makes about $46 million a year.

And it seems like mrs. Beckham, who’s preparing for a Spice Girls reunion performance at the London Olympics, is on her way to catching up with her husband when it comes to earnings, thanks to her passion for fashion. Victoria’s eponymous clothing range is a success, generating over $40 million annually in sales, with growth at double-digit rate. Victoria’s kickback on her fashion line of wool dresses and $3,000 purses, plus other sources of income such as royalties from Spice Girls’ hits, puts her annual earnings at $8 million — a total of $54 million for the Beckhams.

Hollywood’s most famous couple, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, came in fourth on the list, with a combined $45 million annual income. Pitt earned his third Oscar nomination this year for “Moneyball,” but yet the bigger news was his proposal to long-time partner Jolie. Balancing arty pictures like “Tree of Life” with his life as a tabloid target, he folded about $25 million. Also a tabloid-friendly celebrity, Jolie earns millions from big studio flicks, residuals and endorsement deals for companies like Louis Vuitton. Only between may 2011 and may 2012, the actress cashed in some $20 million.

Photos from Highest paid models

Last but certainly not least are superstar Will Smith and his wife, the also actress Jada Pinkett Smith. After taking a short break from the big screen, Smith came back in a big way. The star of “Men in Black 3” (box office: $619 million worldwide and counting) and “After Earth,” an upcoming science-fiction thriller film directed by M. Nigh Shyamalan which co-stars his son Jaden, Smith is one of Hollywood’s most bankable actors, earning $30 million between may 2011 and may 2012.

Jada also had a good year, thanks mostly to her part on the movie “Madagascar 3: Europe’s most Wanted,” which grossed over $500 million worldwide. One of many celebrities to invest a combined total of $10 million in Carol’s Daughter, a line of beauty products created by Lisa Price, she has also acted as a spokesperson for the brand. her earnings have totaled $10 million this year, making hers and Smith’s combined annual salary $40 million.

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Beyonce and Jay-Z are the world’s highest-paid celebrity couple

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    Posted by admin - August 14, 2012 at 10:00 am

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    Beyonce Pregnant? Who’s the daddy?

    So recent news has announced that Beyonce is pregnant! Wasn’t it just a few weeks / months ago that we heard she and Jay-Z might be breaking it off. Maybe this was one of the highlights of their dissagreements. Putting your career on hold for a child is a big step for just about anyone, let alone someone in the constant celebrity spotlight.

    This news is so big it actually broke a record for the “most tweets per second for a single event”. Crazy what we as people find important. One would never see this happening with something like the USPS going broke or soldiers overseas dying.



    In a world with so many major issues I guess it is nice to hear some good news. On another note, why do we really even care?





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      Posted by slacker - September 5, 2011 at 2:39 pm

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      What does the asain woman in the Lady Gaga Telephone video say?

      You know it Lady Gaga Telephone video ft Beyonce, there is a Asian woman that gets slapped on the butt by the man Beyonce is meeting. I have watched both the normal and clean version and in the clean version what the Asian woman think/says is blurred out. but in both video's its in a different language and type of writing. does anyone know what she says?

      it says One Piece like the anime One Piece

      What does the asain woman in the Lady Gaga Telephone video say?

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        Posted by admin - March 12, 2011 at 3:00 pm

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        Did Beyonce pay Kanye West to interrupt Taylor Swift?

        i heard it on the news this mroing. is it true, i knew kanye wouldn't just do something like that.

        I seriously doubt that. Beyonce was embarrassed by the whole affair.

        Kanye has been doing stuff like that for some time now.

        I don't think,but her reaction sorta seemed fake.

        In my personal opinion I don't think so.

        Beyonces is a genuinly nice person and would never wanna sabatoge someone like that.

        I dont think so. my cousin thinks Jay-z did though. And if you think about it, it kinda makes sense. Jay-Z said he didnt think what Kanye said was so terrible, plus, he got mad at Beyonce for bringing taylor back onstage then he supposedly left with Rihanna and they "hung out" all night.

        Maybe its just me, but i think something's going on with Jay and Rihanna

        Did Beyonce pay Kanye West to interrupt Taylor Swift?

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          Posted by admin - February 6, 2011 at 11:00 pm

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