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How Steven Seagal Achieved a Net Worth of $16 Million

Steven Seagal

Steven Seagal has been in the film industry since 1982, making him one of the most reputable action actors in the league of Sylvester Stallone, Chuck Norris, and Dolph Lundgren. He has been known to have quite a huge ego, saying that actors like Michael Jai White and Jean Claude Van Damme do not have any fighting skills, which has led to a feud between him and the Belgian actor. Whatever the case, we enjoy action films, and they have all accumulated a substantial amount of wealth with Steven Seagal net worth standing at $16 million. So, let’s take a look at how he accumulated it, as well as other reasons that have driven his net worth down.

Acting and filmmaking

Steven Seagal began his acting career thanks to being a martial artist. He started training as a child under the guidance of Fumio Demura. At the age of 17, he moved to Japan, where besides teaching English and Zen, the actor also earned black belts in karate, judo, kendo, and aikido. He prides himself as a seventh black belt in aikido, having been taught by Harry Kiyoshi Ishisaka, and whenever you spot him donning a purple robe, he will tell you it is a sign of respect.

The martial arts training led to him working on several films as a stunts coordinator, martial arts instructor, and choreographer, beginning in 1982. His film debut as an actor was in “Above the Law” in 1988. In 2000, Variety reported that since then until the production of “Under Siege II” Steven’s salary had risen to $15 million. Unfortunately, his deal with Warner Bros. came to an end in 1997 because he gained too much weight, and his dressing was less of an action hero and more of a sidekick. However, he and his then partner, Nasso, sold rights to four films for more than $25 million.

Steven Seagal is a jack of all trades, and besides acting, he also is a producer in most of his films; he has produced over 40 films that helped him amass over $600 million. Currently, for him to make an appearance in any movie, the actor is paid $5 million; he received $6.5 million for “Exit Wounds” and “Ticker.” When he got a position of a reserve deputy sheriff, Steven also saw it as an opportunity to increase his earning by producing a reality show, “Steven Seagal: Lawman,” based on the job. Deputy Sheriffs usually get a salary ranging between $32,000 and $48,000, but Steven was not being paid to uphold the law, and he said that his martial arts skills helped a lot with apprehending the criminals. However, he resigned from his position to avoid facing investigations of sex-trafficking allegations by internal affairs.


The actor has always loved music and loved listening to hard rock as a teenager. His taste has changed to blues and country, and Steven featured some of the music in his films. He is not only the lead vocalist but also the lead guitarist. Although his debut album “Songs from The Crystal Cave” had a negative review, his fans like his music, and the actor/musician also has gone on several tours since 2014 and held concerts in both the United States and Europe. He must be good because even Stevie Wonder agreed to do a duet with him in the debut album and the reviews from Amazon are mostly positive with 66% of the customers rating it a five-star album. Since it is going for $21.11 and it can also be streamed, Steven has a good source of revenue from his music too.

He could be worth a lot more.

Steven was once reported to be among the highest-paid actors in Hollywood, so you would expect that from the $600 million he had made at the peak of his career, the action star would have a higher net worth. However, the amount has dwindled to $16 million, and here are a few reasons that could have resulted in the low net worth. Once an actor has enough money, the most logical thing they think of is diversifying; while some like George Clooney and Ryan Reynolds have found more millions in their drinks, Steven cannot say the same.

In 2005 he announced his new line of energy drinks, The Lightning Bolt, which he flaunted as having untold power. Steven said he had traversed all of Asia in search of the ingredients that included Tibetan goji berry, and there was no energy drink that came close to beating his. The drink came in two flavors “Asian Experience” and “Cherry Charge,” but they went out of the market as fast as they had come because no one liked them. He must have lost a considerable amount of money in investments since chances of him having recovered the amount from the sales of the energy drink are zero.

Steven must also have a short list of people willing to work with him, meaning that chances of him even being in a movie are slim. He has been faced with multiple allegations of sexual misconduct from female actors, including Regina Simons, Julianna Margulies, and Portia De Rossi, among many more. Although the charges were dropped, male actors also do not like him. According to Reel Rundown, Tim Meadows revealed that Steven criticizes the cast and writers; thus, they stop working with him. John Leguizamo, on the other hand, was elbowed against a brick wall leaving him to gasp for air while Sean Connery had his wrist broken because he said something that Steven did not like.

The actor recently had a brush with the law when he was charged with unlawfully touting a cryptocurrency offering. According to ABC, he agreed to forfeit profits amounting to $238,500 and a penalty of $238,500 for not disclosing the amounts he received in return for promoting investments in initial coin offering. Steven was a brand ambassador for B2G (Bitcoiin2Gen), and he was paid $1 million for endorsing the product. He has, however, struck a deal with regulators not to promote securities for the next three years, so no more millions from the endorsements.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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