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PewDiePie Tops the Forbes List of Highest-Paid YouTube Stars

Welp. It beats working.


PewDiePie is the undisputed financial king of the YouTube stars.

The Swedish performer earned $12 million over the past year with his video game commentary, from advertisers eager to reach his “bro army” of 40 million subscribers. That haul places him at the top of Forbes magazine’s new ranking of the top-paid YouTube stars, a group of 13 filmmakers who brought in a combined $54.5 million.

The Forbes list includes beauty vloggers, dancing violinists and comedians who attract millions of viewers online. Who made the cut? Check it out:

The comedy duo Smosh — Ian Hecox and Anthony Padilla — earned $10 million with their live-action skits. They’re tied for second place with the Fine Bros, who brought in $8.5 million (and collected a daytime Emmy award) for their Kids React series.

Dubstep violinist Lindsey Stirling earned $6 million — not bad for a musician who couldn’t get signed by a major label.

Also in the top five are Rhett & Link — Rhett McLaughlin and Charles Lincoln Neal III, if we’re being all formal — who are best known for Good Mythical Morning, a send-up of morning television news shows …

… and KSI (both made $4.5 million). The British video game commentator known as KSI (his mom calls him Olajide Olatunji) used YouTube to launch his music career.

Filling out the rest of the high-earners list are beauty entrepreneur Michelle Phan, comedian Lilly Singh (a.k.a. Superwoman), prankster Roman Atwood and chef Rosanna Pansino.

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