‘Hamilton’ Made the Original Broadway Cast Very, Very Rich—Here’s How Much

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Sorry, but the original Hamilton cast salary is more than us normal folks will ever make in our lives. For those who don’t know what Hamilton is, let us explain it to you: Hamilton: An American Musical is a Broadway musical inspired by American history that premiered in January 2015. in the five short years the musical has been in theaters, Hamilton has gone on to win 11 Tonys, tour across the United States and make its creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda, into a household name.

Inspired by Ron Chernow’s 2004 biography of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, the musical—written by and starring Miranda as the titular character—reimagines what American history would look like if the nation’s Founding Father’s and other historical figures were people of color. The Broadway show—which has often been described as being about “American then, as told by America now”—incorporates musical genres like R&B, pop, soul, hip-hop and traditional-style show tunes into its tracks.

Now let’s talk money: In November 2016, Hamilton broke a box office record for the most money grossed in a single week in New York City after it made $3.3 million for an eight-show week and became the first Broadway show to break $3 million in eight performances, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the show’s creators and actors made big bucks in the show’s heyday.

On average, the show made $1.5 million each week in 2016, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Forty Percent of that number goes to the theater’s rent, salaries and other expenses, with another $100,000 going toward advertising for the show. As for the salaries, producers Jeffrey Seller, Sander Jacobs and Jill Furman split a 3 percent share plus a $3,000 administrative office fee, which amounts to $15,000 per week or $780,000 per year for each of them, according to THR. Director Thomas Kail takes a 3 percent cut, which amounts to $1.6 million a year, while choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler receives a 1.5 percent cut, which results in $1.2 million a year.

So what about Miranda and the rest of the cast? Find out that answer ahead.

Lin-Manuel Miranda

Lin Manuel Miranda

Image: Matt Baron/Shutterstock.

Salary: $6.4 million per year

Run: January 2015 to July 2016

The New York Times reported in 2016 that Miranda, who played Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, made around $6.4 million from Hamilton. As the sole writer of the music, lyrics and book for the musical, Miranda receives a 7 percent cut from the average $1.5 million Hamilton makes each week, according to The Hollywood Reporter. This amounts to $105,000 a week from royalties. That number increased by 0.5 percent when the show was 110 percent recouped. Along with his $105K a week, Miranda also received an actor’s salary for his starring role in the musical until he left in July 2016. That exact number is unknown, but, according to Money.com, he made at least $130,300 a year from his on-stage role—though that figure is likely much higher.

Phillipa Soo

Phillipa Soo

Image: Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to July 2016

Salaries for Broadway actors depend on a lot of factors that their agents use to negotiate, so it’s unclear what the individual salaries of the original cast were. That said, there is confirmation that each main cast member made at least $3,400 a week for their actors’ salaries (and even more after a crucial deal was signed.) According to The New York Times, Broadway actors make a union-mandated minimum of $1,900 a week, which would amount to $116,300 a year. That weekly number goes up by $500 if a show is nominated for a Tony (like Hamilton was.) That number goes up another $1,000 if a show wins a Tony (like Hamilton did in 2016), which means that each cast member made at least $3,400 a week or $130,300 a year. Of course, that’s just their actor’s salary. Bloomberg reported in 2016 that 22 original cast members from Hamilton also unionized to receive 1 percent of the net profits from the New York show and 0.33 percent from the profits of Hamilton Chicago and other U.S. shows. Given that Hamilton made an average of $1,500,000 million per week in its first year, this would pay the actors $18,400 per week from New York alone.

Soo played the role of Alexander Hamilton’s wife, Eliza Hamilton. She was nominated for a Tony for Outstanding Actress in a Musical for the role. In Bloomberg’s report, which obtained emails between the cast as they negotiated their 1 percent in royalties, Soo asked if the “buyout” was for the whole cast after the show’s main producer, Sellers, offered cast members lump sum checks ranging from $29,000 to $36,000 after the cast’s initial email. “Is it a buyout for all of us? Can some people choose to take the offer and others not?” she wrote in an email, according to Bloomberg. In the end, Soo was included in the 22 cast members who received a cut of Hamilton‘s royalties.

Leslie Odom Jr.

Leslie Odom Jr.

Image: Gregory Pace/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to August 2016

Odom Jr. played United States Vice President Aaron Burr. He won a Tony for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for the role. Odom Jr. was also included in the 22 original cast members who sent letters to the show’s producers asking for more money. Per the emails Bloomberg obtained, Odom Jr. was one of the leaders of the effort for the original cast to be paid more once Hamilton became a success. He also emailed the cast to tell them not to take Sellers’ lump sum offer. “There is NO counter offer that we should accept under ANY circumstances,” he wrote in an email, according to Bloomberg. “I’ve re-spoken with 3 original company members from Book of Mormon today. … There is no guarantee that our royalties will be the same as theirs. But if they’re even close … this is ground worth standing.”

Renée Elise Goldsberry

Renee Elise Goldsberry

Image: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to September 2016 

Goldsberry starred as Angelica Schuyler, Alexander Hamilton’s sister-in-law, in the original production. She was also one of the 22 cast members to receive a cut of Hamilton‘s net profits, according to Bloomberg. She took over the leadership role of the negotiation process after Javier Muñoz, who originated the role of Philip Hamilton in the Vassar Workshop and replaced Miranda as Hamilton in January 2016, stepped down because of his relationship with the creator.

Daveed Diggs

Daveed Diggs

Image: Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to August 2016

Diggs originated the role of Marquis de Lafayette, a French military officer who fought in the American Revolutionary War, and Thomas Jefferson, another Founding Father and a U.S. President. He went on to win a Tony for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical for his role. Diggs was one of the Hamilton 22, according to Bloomberg. “This letter is brilliant,” he wrote to his cast, according to Bloomberg’s obtained emails, after the first letter was sent to the show’s producers.

Okieriete Onaodowan

Okieriete Onaodowan

Image: AFF-USA/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to December 2016

Onaodowan originated the role of Hercules Mulligan, an Irish spy during the American Revolutionary War, and James Madison, another Founding Farmer and the fourth president of the U.S. In an email obtained by Bloomberg, Onaodowan told the cast that he would no longer perform the musical’s Ham4Ham shows, sidewalk performances for entrants of the Hamilton lottery, until the cast received its 1 percent. “I just know that it’s hard for me to separate Ham4Ham from the overall theme of compensation for our worth,” he wrote “I feel as if I shouldn’t do them, and would love to graciously let Lin know until this 1% is resolved it’s hard to do a Ham4Ham because it isn’t vital to the life of the show.”

Anthony Ramos

Anthony Ramos

Image: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to November 2016

Ramos played John Laurens, a soldier during the American Revolutionary War, and Philip Hamilton, the eldest child of Alexander Hamilton, in the original Broadway production. Though Bloomberg’s report didn’t specify if he was in the Hamilton 22, it’s likely that he was one of the original Broadway cast members.

Jasmine Cephas Jones

Jasmine Cephas Jones

Image: Stephen Lovekin/Shutterstock.

Salary: At least $18,400 per week

Run: January 2015 to December 2016

Cephas Jones played Peggy Schuyler, Alexander Hamilton’s sister-in-law, and Maria Reynolds, Hamilton’s mistress. Bloomberg also didn’t specify her in the Hamilton 22, but as one of the original Broadway cast members (who won a Grammy for Hamilton‘s soundtrack), it’s also likely that she was included in the net profits cut.

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