A recognizable life. Raquel Welch’s net worth reflects her iconic run in Hollywood. The actress passed away on February 15, 2023. She was 82. Her manager Steve Sauer confirmed to CNN that she passed on Wednesday morning in Los Angeles after a “brief illness.” She leaves behind her two children, son Damon Welch and her daughter Tahnee Welch.
She rose to stardom in One Million Years B.C. in 1966 as a Pleistocene-era cave woman and launched her status as a Hollywood Sex Symbol. She won a Golden Globe for her role in Richard Lester’s 1973 adaptation of The Three Musketeers. She starred in and produced, under the Racquel Welch Productions banner, an adaptation of the Colin Stuart novel The Legend of Walks Far Woman, and in the words of TCM, “made a personal crusade” of getting it on the air in 1982. In 2001, she had a supporting role in the comedy Legally Blonde opposite Reese Witherspoon.
So what is Raquel Welch’s net worth?
What is Raquel Welch’s net worth? Raquel Welch’s net worth was estimated to be $40 million according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Raquel Welch was born Jo Racquel Tejada in Chicago, Illinois on September 5, 1940. Her father was an aeronautic engineer from Bolivia. She had two siblings, a brother, James “Jim” Tejada, and a younger sister, Gayle Tejada. Their family moved to San Diego where she graduated from La Jolla High School and went to San Diego State College to pursue an acting career. She married her high school sweetheart James Welch, with whom she had two children, Damon and Tahnee. The two eventually divorced and she ended up taking his last name for the rest of her professional career. Raquel held many jobs like being a weather person in San Diego and waitressing in Texas.
After moving back to California, she partnered with manager Patrick Curtis who helped her attain small roles and eventually moved to bigger roles in A Swingin’ Summer and Fantastic Voyage. Her breakthrough role was in One Million Years B.C. where she played a pre-historic woman wearing “wearing mankind’s first bikini.” The fur bikini was described as a “definitive look of the 1960s”.
Raquel started to star in more films like Shoot Loud, Louder… I Don’t Understand and Fathom. More films led to her Golden Globe victory as Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy in 1975 for her performance in The Three Musketeers. She also went on to star in The Wild Party and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for her performance in the television drama Right to Die.
On being a sex symbol, she said, via The Guardian, “I have exploited being a sex symbol and I have been exploited as one. I wasn’t unhappy with the sex goddess label. I was unhappy with the way some people tried to diminish, demean and trivialize anything I did professionally. But I didn’t feel that from the public.”
Her career started to decline after she went to court against MGM Studios in 1982. She won, with a jury ruling the studio had breached her contract by firing her from a starring role in Cannery Row and hiring actress Debra Winger to take her place. “I never expected such an overwhelming victory as this,” she said after the verdict. “I think what this shows is that it’s important to stand up for your rights, and I hope that women in and out of Hollywood stand up for their rights when they feel they’ve been wronged.” She won a total of $10 million from the case but saw that it took away her own opportunities. “It’s a small town, and once they think you have breached your contract, who wants you, no matter who you are?” she said in 1988. “I haven’t made a movie in almost six years.”
In 2001, she appeared in Legally Blonde and Tortilla Soup. she was awarded the Imagen Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award for her positive promotion of Americans of Latin heritage throughout her career. Her last role on the screen was in How to Be a Latin Lover by Ken Marino, in which she acted opposite Eugenio Derbez and Salma Hayek in 2017.
As well as having an extensive acting career, she also ventured out to beauty. She was a model and spokesperson for Foster Grant sunglasses and partnered with MAC Cosmetics. In 1988 she started her own wig business—Racquel Welch wigs—and partnered with HairU wear. “We are deeply saddened to hear of the news of our friend and legendary beauty Raquel Welch’s passing,” HairUWear President and CEO Michael Napolitano said in a statement after her death. “She has worked with us at HairUWear for 25 years and has been more than just a business partner. She was and still is an inspiration. We are honored to keep her memory, passion and timeless beauty alive through her legacy of Raquel Welch Wigs.” She also released a line of Total Beauty and Fitness books and videos included a hatha yoga program and Welch’s advice on nutrition, beauty, and personal style. In 2010, she wrote a book called Raquel Beyond the Cleavage.
In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, she talked about why she wanted to write the book. “I desperately wanted to speak to women of my generation and, being a mother, to younger girls as well. I wanted to speak about my experience being a woman because it might help by knowing that even if you are touted as some big doo dah, the trials and tribulations and the beauty of being a woman is something that we all experience in our own way.”
In her book, Beyond the Cleavage, Raquel Welch invites readers to look back on her life, from her childhood dominated by a volatile father; her first love, marriage, and divorce; her early struggles as a single working mother in Hollywood; her battles for roles and respect as an actress; and her daring decision never to lie about her age. Looking forward, she offers women a compass to guide them at every crossroad of life, from menopause through the empty-nest years, to dating younger men and beyond.
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