Expensive Splits: The Highest-Paid Celebrity Exes – Forbes

A costly clash: Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift would have made a combined $92.5 million had they stayed together.

Design: Hayley Cuccinello (Forbes)

Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift would have made a combined $92.5 million had they stayed together.

Celebrity couples cite many reasons for their (frequent) break ups: the pressure of the spotlight, the difficulty of long-distance relationships, busy work schedules and, of course, amicable differences. But this year’s Celebrity 100, FORBES’ annual list of the top-paid celebrities, may give some of these splintered twosomes a reason to get back together.

While Beyoncé and Jay Z are the only couple on this year’s list–the pair made an impressive $147 million in the last 12 months–had Jennifer Lopez and Sean Combs (known as Puff Daddy at the time of their relationship) kept their turn-of-the-century romance alive, they would have out-earned the On the Run couple with combined earnings of $168 million, and a few other former duos would have come close if they were willing to take on the weighty baggage of getting back together with an ex in exchange for heavier wallets.

The Diddy half of the Combs-Lopez relationship is this year’s highest-earning celebrity. He got an estimated $70 million back in November when Global Brands Group bought a majority stake in his clothing company Sean John and took in another $60 million thanks to a partnership with Diageo’s Ciroc vodka, his Bad Boy Family Reunion tour and stakes in companies like Revolt TV, DeLeón tequila and Aquahydrate alkaline water.

His former girlfriend–and memorable Grammy date–did pretty well for herself, too. Lopez pocketed $38 million over the past 12 months thanks to a residency in Las Vegas, a number of endorsement deals and her NBC show Shades of Blue. She has now moved on to dating former baseball player Alex Rodriguez, who has impressive wealth of his own.

“I’d be blessed to be a billionaire … hopefully someday it’ll come true and I’ll be able to do some good with it,” Combs told FORBES in 2013 and had he combined bank accounts with Lopez, who has considerable wealth of her own, he may have been a little closer and it would have been feelin’ so good. 

Sean “Puffy” Combs and singer Jennifer Lopez, picutred here as a couple in 2000, would have been the highest-paid celebrity couple had their relationship lasted another 16 years. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

While tabloids said Lopez also dated Drake, another name on this year’s Celebrity 100, Champagne Papi is better known for his on-again, off-again relationship with Rihanna. As the rumors surrounding the pair continue to fly, Drake and Rihanna are—as far as Forbes knows—not together. But if they were, the musical couple and frequent collaborators would have made Beyoncé and Jay Z work for their money.

Drake was the most-streamed artist on the planet over the past 12 months and banked $94 million in the same time period, mainly thanks to a tour that grossed $1 million per spot. Rihanna’s 75-show Anti tour did the same, and she rounded out her $36 million paycheck with money from her budding fashion empire. Their total combined earnings add up to $130 in the last 12 months–if they were together, that may be too good to be true.

Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris, who were the highest-paid couple in 2015, would have been close behind Riri and Drake with combined earnings of $92.5 million. While Swift hasn’t been making music, she managed to bank $44 million this year thanks to lucrative endorsements with the likes of Keds, Diet Coke and Apple. Harris, the top-paid DJ on our list, raked in $48.5 million from his Vegas and music festival performances (he may have stopped dating Swift with the hopes of staying out of the headlines, but he can make an impressive seven figures each time he headlines).

The rise of dance music has been astronomical in the last three years and I happened to be in the right place at the right time,” Harris told Forbes of his fortune back in 2013. 

Of course Hollywood relationships are almost constantly in flux, and if Harris finds himself at the right place at the right time when it comes to another celebrity romance, his $92.5 million breakup with Swift may give way to nine-figure relationship, and with that kind of money, what’s a little bit of bad blood?

For the latest on the entertainment industry, follow me on Twitter @MadelinePBerg.