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Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Dead Celebs – Will An African Superstar Make Next Year’s List?

Dead Celebs – Will An African Superstar Make Next Year’s List?

It’s fair to say that a lot of celebrities who have passed have gone on to make a fortune. Of course, it’s not they who are the recipient of the royalties coming their way from music, books, movies and so on, but their families and loved ones. In the main, it’s dead celebs from the USA making the rich list. But is there the potential for an African superstar to force their way into the reckoning?

What you will notice if you check out the dead celebs rich lists is that you will often see many of the same names from year to year. Michael Jackson has topped the bill for the most part in the years following his death, being the top earner in all but a couple of years. But, events that transpire within the twelve-month period before this year’s top-earning dead celebrities are revealed can have a significant impact on proceedings.

Using 2021 as an example. Instead of Michael Jackson staying in first place, it’s the United Kingdom’s famous author Roald Dahl who came from nowhere, with estimated earnings of over $500 million. And this is the case because Netflix, the largest streaming platform on the planet, have acquired the Roald Dahl Story Company. 

Events like this will always move people up and down the list, also seen when Michael Jackson’s estate sold their stake in Sony back to Sony for nearly $300 million.
If you are to cycle through the lists of dead celebrities from years gone by, you’re going to notice that each one is largely made up of Americans. And that there are no Africans who have been ranked so far. It begs the question as to whether there will be an African superstar who will make next year’s list. Or if they will appear in any future rankings. 

Now, it’s worth pointing out that it’s believed the richest man ever to live is a former West African ruler from the 14th century who goes by the name of Mansa Musa. But, while he was wealthy, it was his generosity that effectively ruined the economy. If you go back a decade, many sites estimated his net worth to be around $400bn, which is some going.

Let’s face it, it’s going to be incredibly tough for any Africans to make the type of money after death that the likes of Prince, Michael Jackson, Elvis and Bob Marley accrue. But, someone such as film industry mogul Shona Ferguson passing is significant. Ferguson, who died of Covid related complications, has a following of 1.5 million on Instagram alone, putting him firmly in the celebrity bracket.

But, the likely scenario for 2022 will that Michael Jackson, Charles Schulz, Dr Seuss and the like will all occupy the top end of the list. That is, unless there is a shock death, a posthumous release of a piece of work such as a music album or movie, or a business deal akin to the Roald Dahl and Netflix agreement.

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