Star Wars is one of the most profitable and loved franchises in the world. The space opera is extremely influential and has a fanbase that spans the world.
The main storyline of the films ended with the final film of the sequel trilogy Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. The films saw actors from the original trilogy return such as the late Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill. The JJ Abrams directorial was a huge success at the box office, earning over $1.07 billion at the box office. However, despite the film being such a big blockbuster, the stars of the film reportedly earned a lot less money.
How Much Were Carrie Fisher And Mark Hamill Paid For Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker?
Actors Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher were the main protagonists along with Harrison Ford in the original Star Wars trilogy. Beginning with the 1977 film, A New Hope, the trio traveled across galaxies far far away to defeat Darth Vader and the Empire. Mark Hamill played Luke Skywalker, the protagonist of the ‘Skywalker Saga’ while Carrie Fisher played Princess Leia.
Hamill and Fisher were last seen in the third film of the original Star Wars trilogy i.e. Episode VI: Return of the Jedi and were not part of the ‘prequel trilogy’. However, they reprised their roles as Luke and Leia in JJ Abrams’ sequel trilogy, making their first appearance in 2015’s Episode VII: The Force Awakens. The trilogy was supposed to focus on a new generation of heroes, including Daisy Ridley’s Rey and John Boyega’s Finn.
While Hamill was reportedly informed that he would not have much to do in The Force Awakens, fans still hoped he would have a substantial role. However, spoiler alert: he only appeared for a single dialogue-less scene. For his appearance in The Force Awakens, Variety reported that Mark Hamill was paid a low seven-figure salary. Other sources claim it was a million dollars for his one-scene appearance and he was likely paid the same amount for The Rise of Skywalker.
The late actress Carie Fisher made one of her final film appearances in The Force Awakens as Princess Leia. According to Variety, she was reportedly paid a similarly low seven-figure salary for her appearance in the film. After her death in 2016, she made an appearance in The Rise of Skywalker through archived and repurposed footage, with the permission of her family.
How Much Were Other Actors Paid For The Rise Of Skywalker?
While Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher were paid low salaries for their relatively smaller appearances in the sequel trilogy, the main protagonists of the series reportedly earned far less. According to Variety, actors Daisy Ridley and John Boyega, who were relative newcomers at the time reportedly earned a salary that ranged between $100,000-300,000 for the films, starting from The Force Awakens.
While the actors did have the chance to renegotiate their salaries in subsequent films, which they probably did for The Last Jedi and The Rise of Skywalker, the fact that the actors did not have a major film or TV show before their appearance in the films resulted in their lower pay scale, despite headlining the films. Actors Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver reportedly used their résumé of high-profile gigs to bump up their salaries and according to Variety, were paid mid-to-high six-figure salaries.
Contrary to this, actor Harrison Ford, who played Han Solo in the Star Wars franchise received a huge salary and trumped all his co-stars. According to Variety, he earned anywhere between $10M to $20 million for his appearance in The Force Awakens. Disney, the studio behind the film, also reportedly had a ‘legacy pay scale’ to demarcate the salaries of actors who were part of the franchise earlier and new entrants. Hence, actors such as Mark Hamill, Ford, and Carrie Fisher earned more than the protagonists of the series despite their limited screen presence.