How Rich Is Tom Cruise?

Tom Cruise launched his acting career in the early 1980s, and before long, he dominated the industry. In that decade alone, Cruise starred in "The Outsiders," "Risky Business," "Top Gun," and so much more. His films have covered multiple genres, and while his work is primarily in action, Cruise has headlined everything from science fiction and fantasy to drama and horror — the man cannot be pinned down.

Cruise's work has made him an international superstar, and that's a title he's held for decades. In addition to acting, Cruise has done a great deal of producing and become a licensed pilot. Also? He's trained so much that he's essentially a professional stunt worker. Cruise has defied death at every turn as he's scaled and jumped from incredible heights or jumped from planes at the highest possible altitude. Whatever the situation, Cruise will learn how to do it and get it done.

Because of this, he has become something of a one-man movie virtuoso. He can bankroll his own films and get just about anyone to star in them. This has led many fans to wonder how much money Cruise has managed to earn over the years. After all, he's been in some of the highest-earning films of all time, so you know he's had to make a lot of money. This is how Tom Cruise became one of the industry's richest actors.

Was Tom Cruise born rich?

Tom Cruise, whose real name is Thomas Cruise Mapother IV, was not born into a wealthy family. His father earned his living as an electrical engineer, while his mother worked as a teacher. Cruise has three sisters, and the family was much closer to poverty than wealth. The Cruise family moved around a lot, and Cruise attended a new school almost every year. In addition to living without money, Cruise's father was physically and mentally abusive.

Cruise told Parade, "He was a bully and a coward. He was the kind of person where, if something goes wrong, they kick you. It was a great lesson in my life — how he'd lull you in, make you feel safe, and then, bang!" In addition to the chaotic home life wrought by his father, Cruise had difficulty reading. Cruise was diagnosed with dyslexia when he was seven and didn't appreciate the label. Despite this, he worked hard and overcame his difficult childhood.

Cruise got into drama during elementary school, and he fostered a love of acting that continues to this day. He came close to becoming a Catholic priest, but acting was his true calling. After graduating high school, Cruise moved to New York City to pursue his dream, and at 19, he joined the cast of "Taps," telling People, "I couldn't believe I was making a movie. I'm laying in bed, and I'm so excited and so tense. I remember talking to myself going, 'Just relax.' I didn't want this to ever end."

When did the actor become rich?

Tom Cruise may not have been born rich, but he found his way to financial independence. Getting there took some work, and he put in his time. As he worked throughout the 1980s, his star power grew, and before long, he earned a lot of money. When he started in 1981's "Endless Summer" and "Taps," he earned $50,000 for the latter; a tidy sum, to be sure, especially for a 19-year-old in 1981. In 1983, Cruise starred in "Risky Business," his breakout role for which he made $75,000, the same amount he earned for "All the Right Moves."

The success of "Risky Business" opened doors for Cruise, and he was able to command a significantly higher salary. By 1985's "Legend," Cruise was earning half-a-million for his work, and the following year, he starred in "Top Gun," which is arguably his biggest early film. Cruise's work as Maverick in the blockbuster movie earned him $2 million, which was twice the amount he made for "The Color of Money."

Given his various salaries and how he continued earning more each year, 1986 is likely the year he became rich. Before that, he had more money than most, but crossing that million-dollar salary threshold via his two films in '86 put him above most people working in the industry, and his salary has only grown from there.

How much money does Tom Cruise make?

Tom Cruise's early work elevated him from poverty to multi-millionaire in less than a decade, and he's only increased his salary from there. While his salaries from all the films he's starred in aren't public knowledge, much is known about his income. Cruise began earning millions toward the end of the '80s, and into the 1990s, he increased the number significantly. He's been paid a few million in some films while others have nabbed considerably more.

On average, Cruise banks $20 million for each movie he's in, though this is relatively low compared to some of his work. For the 2005 Spielberg release of "War of the Worlds," Cruise took home $100 million. He managed this by foregoing his usual salary for a percentage of the film's gross, and it did gangbusters. Cruise likely made the same amount for 2022's "Top Gun: Maverick." That's more than he typically makes for a film, but it's hardly his only huge payday.

Forbes named Cruise the highest-paid actor of 2012, having earned $75 million from May 2011 to May 2012. Most of that money came from "Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol." In 2016, he dropped to the fourth spot on Forbes' list for earning $53 million, primarily from "Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation." Cruise makes so much money from his movie work, Casumo calculated in 2020 that he's paid an average of $7,000 for every line he speaks, or $205,609 for 10 seconds of work (via CinemaBlend).

How does he make money?

Tom Cruise makes money the old-fashioned way — he works incredibly hard. Cruise is well-known for his work ethic, and it's something that's been a part of his professional life from the very start. Cruise doesn't miss a day of work when filming a movie, and he expects everyone on the project to do their jobs. While filming "Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One," someone recorded Cruise yelling at crew members for violating COVID-19 protocols, and if you listen to his words, he was primarily concerned with keeping everyone employed.

Work is something Cruise does well, and he's been at it for a long time. Since his movie career kicked off in 1981, he's been in over 50 films, many of them as the lead. Of course, like many in the business, Cruise hasn't kept himself busy with acting alone. In addition to his time in front of the camera, Cruise has put in a lot of hours behind it as well, working as a producer, which he's done since 1993.

Producing films is incredibly lucrative when they do well, and as you likely know, Cruise's films are often financially successful. Cruise's movies have earned over $10 billion since he began acting. His producer credits are found on many of those films, amounting to $6.6 billion. Cruise didn't earn that much money from those ventures, but he took home a significant chunk, to say the least.

How does the star make money as a producer?

In 1992, Tom Cruise formed Cruise/Wagner Productions with his talent agent of 11 years, Paula Wagner. They co-created the production company to give Cruise more freedom in the movies he made, and he used the company to help make his most profitable franchise to date. The first film produced by C/W Productions was "Mission: Impossible" in 1996. That film launched a massive franchise, and Cruise has been raking it in ever since.

Cruise's production work has elevated him to the same level as some of the most influential people in the industry. Edward Epstein of Slate described his prowess: "Tom Cruise, who stands — along with George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, and Jerry Bruckheimer — as one of the handful of producers who can reliably deliver a billion-dollar franchise." Since becoming a producer, Cruise has added that credit to nearly every one of his films. His negotiating skills have helped increase the budgets for many of his movies, and he's inked incredibly lucrative deals with studios.

Among Cruise's many excellent deals is his contract with Paramount concerning DVD sales. For "Mission: Impossible II and III," Cruise negotiated a 40% royalty and 12% of the DVD sales. Ultimately, Cruise received $1.80 per DVD sale, and the first film's sales netted him $92 million in profits. Cruise negotiates deals like this all the time, and it's made him an incredibly rich man. In 2006, Cruise and Wagner took over United Artists, nabbing the pair 30% ownership of the studio.

What is Tom Cruise's net worth?

Tom Cruise spent over 40 years creating and cultivating his brand, and it paid off. With his catalog of work in more than 50 films, Cruise has amassed a fortune, and he's worth a lot of money. Cruise's annual salary averages out to $50 million. Most of Cruise's movies make hundreds of millions at the global box office, and on top of his salary, he often takes home a significant chunk of change via his producing work, so Cruise's income is immense.

His filmography makes it easy to see how he built his wealth. While he started in 1981, earning $50,000 for his earliest work, that salary didn't remain for long. Within a decade, he commanded salaries between $9 and $13 million. That rate increased, and by the early aughts, Cruise was banking more than $70 million for his acting and producing work, primarily in the "Mission: Impossible" franchise.

Cruise has built a robust real estate portfolio like most celebrities, earning him quite a bit of money. When you add it all up and consider the amount of work Cruise has done over the years, his estimated net worth of $600 million actually seems somewhat low. Given the number of high-profile films and paydays in excess of $7 million, it almost seems like he should have more money in the bank — his total career earnings of salaries and bonuses between 1983 and 2019 was $745 million.

How does the actor spend his money?

Tom Cruise makes a lot of money and is not shy about spending it. Cruise is a member of the Church of Scientology and has been for a long time. His devotion to the church nearly tanked his career, but fortunately, "Mission: Impossible" fixed a lot of the damage his association with the organization did. Regardless, Cruise remains a faithful adherent, and he's given the church a considerable amount of money over the years. As of 2008, Cruise has donated an estimated $25 million to the church.

Granted, the church benefits more from Cruise's association than his donations, but it doesn't hurt the bottom line. Outside of his spiritual interests, Cruise likes to spend his hard-earned cash on the things he enjoys. Cruise earned his pilot's license in 1994 and has amassed a collection of airplanes, including a P-51 Mustang fighter and a Gulfstream IV G4 jet. He likely also owns a HondaJet and Bombardier Challenger 300 jet.

Cruise likely had to shell out $4 million for the vintage WWII Mustang, which he personally flew for a scene in "Top Gun: Maverick." He paid around $20 million for his Gulfstream, which boasts a jacuzzi, movie screening room, and more. Cruise doesn't keep his aircraft in his backyard — he owns a private hangar in Burbank, California, though it's unclear what the facility costs.

How many houses does he own?

Tom Cruise spends a lot of his money on real estate. He's amassed a considerable real estate portfolio, which he occasionally adds to and decreases for an impressive profit. Cruise's portfolio included a mansion in Beverly Hills, which he purchased in 2007 for $30.5 million. Another of Cruise's properties hit the market in 2015 for nearly $13 million. He likely purchased the property in 2005 for $11.65 million.

Cruise has owned several properties in New York City, including a 2,200-square-foot apartment he sold in 2013 for $3 million. One of his largest properties is a 320-acre ranch outside Telluride, Colorado, which he listed for $39.5 million. That came after he couldn't sell it for $59 million, making for a considerable price cut. In 2017, Cruise spent $9,580,500 on a 20,826-square-foot penthouse and another $1.475 million on three condos in Clearwater, Florida's Skyview Tower, located blocks from the Church of Scientology's headquarters.

In 2016, Cruise sold an L.A. property he purchased in 2007 for $38 million, returning a profit of $7.5 million. He also sold a Hollywood Hills property to Eva Longoria for $11.4 million. Much of Cruise's wealth is tied up in his properties, which he buys and sells all over the United States. In 2006, Cruise purchased an English estate in West Sussex for $4.2 million, so he's not limited to spending all his time in the U.S.

How many cars does Tom Cruise own?

Tom Cruise may love his airplanes, but he's a car collector at heart. Cruise has built up quite a collection of autos over the years, so it's fair to say he's spent a lot of cash putting it together. Cruise's car collection includes automobiles from around the world. Cruise fell in love with the 1949 Buick Roadmaster he drove in "Rain Man," so he got one of his own in red. Cruise also owns a 1958 Chevrolet Corvette C1, which is one of his most prized autos.

Cruise's garage also includes a 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS, which he featured in "Jack Reacher." One of Cruise's oldest cars he purchased long ago (not when he was rich) is his 1976 Dodge Colt, which he drove to New York to become an actor. Cruise drove a Porsche 928 in "Risky Business," and while the car in the film ended up in Lake Michigan, Cruise opted to purchase a drier one for his collection.

Cruise's jam-packed garage includes cars he drove in movies or those he bought long ago. The complete list is long, but some of the more notable automobiles are his 1983 BMW 3-Series E30, a 1988 Nissan 300ZX SCCA race car, a 2005 Bugatti Veyron, a 2010 Saleen Mustang S281, a 1996 Porsche 993, and a 2000 Ford Excursion, which he sometimes uses as a decoy, as it was custom-built by the Church of Scientology to protect Katie Holmes while she was pregnant.

Does he donate to charity?

Tom Cruise is a generous man who doesn't horde his cash in a giant room like Scrooge McDuck. Regarding religious donations, he's given $25 million to his church over the years, so he's generous with his cash for organizations he supports. He also shares his time with members of the U.S. military. Often, when he has a day off from filming, if there's a military hospital in the vicinity, Cruise will stop by and pay his respect to the men and women of the armed forces. Cruise developed a strong relationship with the military via "Top Gun" and has maintained this relationship.

In addition to donating his time, Cruise supports numerous causes, including organizations that help people overcome dyslexia, as he did. Cruise is a founding board member of the Hollywood Education and Literacy Project. The list of charities Cruise supports is long. It includes everything from UNICEF and the Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation to the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes and the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation.

Cruise is a humanitarian and goes above and beyond whenever the need arises. In 1996, he helped a hit-and-run accident victim in Santa Monica, California, rescuing an actor he took to the hospital, where he paid all of her bills. That same year, at a film premiere, Cruise pulled two children to safety as a crowd approached, and he also saved five individuals from a burning yacht, so he's personally helped a lot of people.

Is Tom Cruise married?

Tom Cruise has been married and divorced three times. He told Rolling Stone in 1986, "You know, coming from a broken home — it did seem like a broken home, my parents got divorced — my worries were, 'Jesus, am I going to be faithful? Does marriage work as a concept?' I really never thought it could." Despite this, Cruise married Mimi Rogers the following year. The couple divorced in 1990, and it had a lot to do with Scientology. Rogers introduced Cruise to the religion, and the religion broke up their marriage, costing Cruise $4 million in their settlement.

1990 was the year Cruise met Nicole Kidman on the set of "Days of Thunder." He was still married to Rogers at the time, and they married less than a year after Cruise's divorce. Cruise and Kidman remained together until 2001, when he filed for divorce. The settlement details were secret, though it's believed they agreed to a 50-50 split of their finances, estimated to be around $433 million at the time.

In 2005, Cruise declared his love for Katie Holmes, and they got hitched the following year. That marriage ended in divorce in 2012, and the divorce settlement was signed in just two weeks. It's unknown what dollar amount was awarded to Holmes, if any, but the main focus of the settlement concerned the couple's child, Suri Cruise Holmes, who remained with her mother who received $33,333.33 per month in child support.

Does he have children?

Tom Cruise didn't have any children with Mimi Rogers, but his second marriage resulted in the adoption of two kids. The couple adopted Isabella "Bella" Jane in 1992 and Connor Anthony in 1995. Bella doesn't have a great relationship with her mother, while Connor occasionally makes public appearances alongside his father. Cruise supported his children after his divorce from Nicole Kidman and appears to maintain a relationship with them in adulthood. That said, neither Cruise nor Kidman attended Bella's wedding, and Kidman didn't even know it was happening.

It's unclear what amount, if any, Cruise paid over the years for his adopted children, while his support for his only biological child, Suri, is known. When Cruise and Katie Holmes divorced, Holmes retained sole custody of their daughter. Holmes partly divorced Cruise to protect Suri from Scientology. As a result, Cruise has had little to no involvement in his daughter's life, though, in 2017, Cruise said he wanted to change that and reestablish a relationship with her.

In terms of support, Cruise's divorce settlement with Holmes required him to pay four cents shy of $400,000 per year in child support. That amount adds up to $3,763,000 Cruise must pay to Holmes in support from the time of their divorce to the day Suri turns 18. Cruise's total paid in supporting his kids is unknown, but given his support for Suri, the amount is likely in the millions.

Tom Cruise is one of the richest actors in the world

Tom Cruise has spent his entire adult life working as an actor, and he's amassed more than $600 million in personal wealth since he started in 1981. Cruise's acting and producing work made him a multi-millionaire, making it possible for him to buy anything and everything he could want, including a fleet of airplanes and automobiles. While he's sitting pretty on a massive pile of cash, Cruise isn't the wealthiest actor in the world.

Granted, Cruise is pretty high on the list — most people don't have anywhere close to $600 million in the bank. Still, there are some who've amassed significantly more money than Cruise. CEO World Magazine put together a list of the wealthiest actors in the world based on their net worth, and Cruise came in 6th place. Some of the names above him include Dwayne Johnson and Jerry Seinfeld, who have $800 million and $950 million, respectively.

Above them sits Tyler Perry, with $1 billion, and Jami Gertz, whose net worth is a shockingly high $3 billion. Despite only coming in 6th place, Cruise has little to worry about as his movies continue to bring in hundreds of millions of dollars. In 2023, Cruise's seventh film in the "Mission: Impossible" franchise raked in well over half a billion at the global box office, so there's little chance his net worth will dip below where it is, and should only increase as he continues blowing audiences away, year after year.