Leslie Odom Jr. Risked a Huge Blow to His Net Worth by Joining ‘Hamilton’ & It Paid Off Big Time

Leslie Odom Jr.
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No judgment if you’re already wondering what Leslie Odom Jr.’s net worth is after watching his knockout performance as Aaron Burr in Hamilton this week. With a role like that—especially in a musical with such widespread popularity—it only makes sense to question how Odom Jr.’s financial life is looking like as an actor. And if you still haven’t watched Hamilton yet…all you need to know is that his performance is seriously priceless. His net worth gets pretty close to that, too.

The 38-year-old actor has had a long career on and off-Broadway, in films, television, and music (that’s right: Odom Jr. is also a jazz artist). He even won a Tony for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for his role in Hamilton. A not-too-shabby resume, to say the least! But his success in the field hasn’t been without its own struggles. In fact, Odom Jr. has had to be a strong advocate for himself and his Hamilton cast mates. It’s hard to imagine, but there was a time when Hamilton’s success wasn’t a guarantee.

According to emails obtained by Bloomberg, Odom Jr. was one of 22 original cast members who requested more money for their roles in Hamilton. He reportedly emailed the entire cast as well, urging them not to accept a lowballed “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.”

It’s a good thing he did advocate for himself and his peers, because their salaries all saw a boost because of it. To see just how much Odom Jr. ended up making from Hamilton alone, as well as his overall net worth, keep on reading.

How much did Leslie Odom Jr. make from Hamilton?

In 2016, Money estimated the Hamilton cast salary to be at least around $98,800—and that was before the show won 11 Tony Awards. At the time, Money suggested that lead actors could see salary bumps of up to $1,000 per week if the show won at least one Tony. That boost would amount to salaries of anywhere up to $130,300 a year, and we wouldn’t be surprised if Leslie Odom Jr. was taking home the highest payout possible at the time.

How much money did Leslie Odom Jr. risk to join Hamilton?

While Hamilton is hugely famous now, many might not realize that the musical started off-Broadway at The Public Theater in New York City, where it was workshopped before going to the Broadway stage. Odom Jr., along with other original cast members, took a chance on the fledgling show. “What seems obvious now—the show’s so ubiquitous and it’s having such a wonderful life, it can seem like, oh that it was a given that it was gonna be successful—but all of us, we were turning down work and making ourselves available for this off-Broadway hip-hop musical about the Founding Fathers,” Odom Jr. told Business Insider. “People were lookin’ at us like we were crazy. People were lookin’ at us like we were out of our minds. We happily did it because we believed in it.”

Even Odom Jr. risked other career opportunities to take on this role. “I walked away from a television show and guaranteed contract for half a million dollars and people thought I was nuts and maybe I was, maybe I was a little crazy but the bigger the risk, sometimes, a lot of times, the bigger the reward,” he told the outlet.”

What is Leslie Odom Jr.’s net worth?

According to multiple reports, Leslie Odom Jr.’s net worth in 2020 is estimated to be over $10 million.

Hamilton is available to stream on Disney+.

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