How much is Ray Liotta worth?
|Net Worth:||$15 Million
|Date of Birth:||December 18, 1954|
|Country:||United States of America|
Who Is Ray Liotta
From working as a bartender and performing in low budget musicals, Ray Liotta became a respected American actor who reached movie star status after starring in one of the greatest gangster movies of all time, Goodfellas. His lines from the movie are quoted to no end and the movie has become a part of pop culture. Liotta is known for taking on roles that are affiliated to gangsters or crooked cops, and has even gone on to narrate mafia documentaries thanks to his thick American-Italian accent. The actor’s other popular movies include Field of Dreams, Hannibal, and Blow.
How Did Ray Liotta Get So Rich?
Though most of Liotta’s salaries for his movies are undisclosed and the only one that isn’t is his $1.5 million paycheck for 1994’s No Escape, the box office figures for many of Liotta’s movies speak for themselves. Liotta has had a lot of box office bombs, which tend to be when he tries to become an action star or ventures outside of his villainous roles, but the gangster movies have served Liotta well. When it comes to Goodfellas, not only did it make more than $100 million worldwide, but streaming services regularly enter bidding wars every few years over which service gets to host it.
But Liotta’s highest grossing movie may come as a surprise. 2001’s Hannibal broke box office records as it grossed over $58 million domestically in its opening weekend alone, which gave it the third highest grossing debut ever, just being edged out by The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Not only that, but it kept the record for highest opening for a horror film for 16 years until it was eventually beaten by 2017’s It. And Hannibal remained the highest grossing R-rated movie ever until The Passion of the Christ finally beat it in 2004. Overall, the movie made more than $350 million worldwide, despite being negatively reviewed by critics.
Why Is He So Famous?
After completing college in the 70s, Liotta got a job bartending so he could make money while also performing in low budget musicals. Some of the musicals he starred in included Cabaret, Dames at Sea, and Sound of Music. The hard work paid off as he was able to get an agent and land a recurring role in the soap opera Another World for three years between 1978 and 1981. Starring in the soap opera earned him a lot of popularity, but unfulfilled from starring in it, Liotta moved to Los Angeles to try and make it in the movie industry.
In the 80s, Liotta was quick to get work, starring in The Lonely Lady in 1983 and then earning widespread critical acclaim with his role in Something Wild, as he received his first Golden Globe nomination. And three years after that, the actor portrayed Shoeless Joe Jackson in one of the most celebrated baseball movies of all time, Field of Dreams. That film has become iconic in the way that it blends fantasy, drama, and sports together, as Liotta’s character was in fact a ghost of a real life baseball player from the 1910s.
What came after that was the role of a lifetime, one that other actors would kill for. Liotta starred in not just a Martin Scorsese movie, but a Martin Scorsese gangster movie. By this point Scorsese already had a number of classics under his belt, such as Mean Streets, Raging Bull, and Taxi Driver, so actors knew that a role in one of his movies would sky rocket their profiles. Goodfellas is now considered to be one of the greatest gangster films of all time, as it is rated the 17th best film in history according to IMDB and it has spawned so many parodies in film and TV.
Liotta played the main character in the movie, the real life gangster Henry Hill, and he was a part of an all star cast including Robert De Niro and Al Pacino. Liotta’s lines in the movie are quoted to no end, including one of the most famous opening lines in a movie ever, “As far back as I can remember, I always knew I wanted to be a gangster.” Since this movie was released more than 30 years ago, Liotta continues to be offered roles in movies that are Italian gangsters or violent criminals, and it’s all thanks to Goodfellas. He even played the gangster Tommy Vercetti, the main character in the biggest video game of 2002, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
What Makes Liotta Successful?
Liotta has a New York-Italian sounding vernacular, which is strange as he isn’t Italian, but as he was adopted by Italians after being abandoned at an orphanage as a baby, he grew up hearing that accent. Together with his accent, his greased back hair, his iconic deranged laugh, and his physical agility, Liotta is able to play violent gangsters on screen as well as the elder statesmen of the genre, including Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, and James Gandolfini, and Robert De Niro.
This has helped Liotta get countless roles as gangsters and crooked cops ever since the early 1990s, as he suits the role perfectly. On top of that, his terrifically gangster sounding voice has earned him jobs narrating, as he has narrated not one, but two documentaries about the Italian mafia; 2005’s Inside the Mafia on National Geographic and 2015’s The Making of the Mob on ABC. The actor has even been offered roles in video games as gangsters, and he also has a leading role in the upcoming Sopranos prequel, The Many Saints of Newark. In 2012 alone, Liotta starred in two movies where he played a gangster (Killing Them Softly and The Iceman) and one movie where he played a crooked cop (The Place Beyond The Pines).
Owing to growing up in an American Italian household and grafting through college to become the best performer he can possibly be, it all paid off after be cast in a Martin Scorsese picture. And after being offered dozens of roles based on that one performance, Goodfellas changed his life and he now has a net worth of $16 million. The actor remains just as busy as ever, as he has a starring role in the upcoming Adam Sandler movie Hubie Halloween, the comedy El Tonto written by Charlie Day, and No Sudden Move alongside Don Cheadle and Jon Hamm.