She’s been an afternoon staple on TV programs around the world but did you know that Judge Judith Sheindlin is the highest paid TV star on Earth? Well, now you do.
At 72 years old, Judge Judy is no shrinking violet and doesn’t look to be going anywhere – she’s just signed on for another three seasons at $60 million a pop. That’s a $180 million pay cheque coming her way.
Judge Judy has been the highest paid TV star for years now, and is one of the longest running too. She’s had her own syndicated TV show for 19 seasons, with the first season screening in 1996.
So how has she managed to be the highest earning person on TV for so many years? Well, it comes down to her trademark style of not backing down. According to Judy in her 2014 book, What Would Judy Say? Be the Hero of Your Own Story, she went out to dinner with CBS executives and handed them a sealed envelope to open after dinner. In it was a note card with her price and contract duration. She simply wanted a “yes” or “no” and the rest was history. She said in her book, “I didn’t believe they would turn me down…I didn’t think they could afford to. But I was also prepared to walk away”. She sets her own terms and refuses to negotiate how much she wishes to earn.
But why is Judge Judy still so popular? Perhaps it’s her hard line court presence or maybe it’s her moments of kindness to the defendants? Or maybe it’s because she cornered the market before anyone else did. There may be imitations but most can agree that Judge Judy is the best reality court show. It has consistently been the top daytime TV show over the last five years in the US and is seen by an average of 10.1 million viewers every episode, double the viewers of Dr Phil, the second-highest watched show.
Here’s one of the best videos of Judge Judy doing her thing – we think she’s awesome for still paving her own way at 72!