Mark Hamill, he of Star Wars fame by nabbing the role of Luke Skywalker, didn’t have the strongest start to his acting career. He had a few bit parts on television sitcoms such as The Cosby Show (which he may now want to delete from his resume for several reasons, including the fact that it paid him all of $300) along with The Partridge Family and General Hospital. So he had done some soap opera work, something useful for his soon to be staring role in the Star Warts franchise.
These early roles didn’t pay much more than to keep him paying the bills, until he found a lead role in another family-oriented show, Eight is Enough. But that career changing move was one he left after only a year. It was during that year that he was offered the lead role in the first Star Wars movie as Luke Skywalker.
Before we look at the details, the estimated net worth of Hamill varies between $6 million and $18 million. That’s a pretty wide range, so we’ll try to sort things out as we go along.
First, here are his 5 highest grossing Star Wars movies, which make up the lion’s share of his income:
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015): $936,662,225
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017): $596,867,242
- Star Wars (1977): $460,998,007
- Return of the Jedi (1983): $309,306,177
- The Empire Strikes Back (1980): $290,475,067
The Last Jedi reportedly had him making at least $1 million, so presuming that his income over the last 40 years has not been completely spent, it is safe to say that we can add that $1 million to his total net worth. His first Star Wars movie made him a reported $650,000, which based on just the inflation rate (not the inflated salaries of movie stars) would be $2,704,536 in 2018.
This starting point is important since coming close to the real net worth value has to estimate his earnings from all the other Star Wars episodes that followed. Worth noting is that back in 1977 when he was negotiating his contract he included as part of the contract a one-fourth of one percent of the film’s future earnings. If he did it in 1977, it is almost guaranteed he did it for all of the other episodes of the franchise. The total for the top 5 listed above would have grossed nearly $6.5 million, based only on that one-quarter of 1 percent figure. What is also known is Hamill received the same percentage deal for the Empire Strikes Back, which is on the bottom of the list of his five to grossing films. Another safe presumption is that his cut of the future earnings increased from that original figure.
So at this point Hamill’s net worth appears to be closer to the $18 million figure than the $8 million. But though the largest part of his fame and fortune has come from the Star Wars franchise, he has done a considerable amount of other work, including voiceovers, television, and theater. He didn’t do it for the money, but because he wanted to continuing working as an actor and not end up typecast as many former actors had been.
This relatively unique approach to acting does muddy the waters a bit when trying to come to an actual net worth number. Some actors continue their careers by demanding large paydays, but it isn’t exactly a secret that voiceovers and theater roles, even as the lead actor, don’t pay as much as a major motion picture. He received solid reviews for his theater performances, and his work in Batman: The Animated Series gave him consistent work beginning in 1992 as Batman fans took well to his voiceovers.
We do know he owns a home in Malibu, California, so that should add a few million dollars to the net worth kitty. He does have a wife and three children, and a BMW, which is really not all that high end of a luxury car. All of this adds up to the $18 million figure being the most accurate of all the estimates out there. One interesting fact to consider is that his one quarter of one percent contract deals can only increase his net worth in the future, whether he is cast in any future episodes of the Star Wars franchise. He was 26 years old when he signed that first contract, and it is likely he hasn’t lost his financial savvy since then.