Steve Eighinger

Some of our favorites may be gone, but certainly aren't forgotten

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Jul. 7, 2020 12:01 am

They may be gone, but are hardly forgotten.

Some of our most popular celebrities are those no longer with us, according to recent information released by Forbes magazine.

First, let's look at the 2019 incomes -- the most recent figures that are available --from various sales, streaming and intellectual property rights for the estates of the following stars who are dead:

1. Michael Jackson: $60 million.

2. Elvis Presley: $39 million.

3. Charles Schulz, $38 million.

4. Arnold Palmer, $30 million.

5. Bob Marley, $20 million.

6. Dr. Seuss, $19 million.

7. John Lennon, $14 million

8. Marilyn Monroe, $13 million.

9. Prince, $12 million.

10. Nipsey Hussle, $11 million.

For me, the most interesting -- and arguably iconic -- figure in the mix is Elvis.

"He wasn't called The King for nothing," Kim Mannix of pointed out earlier this year.

Presley's music, movies and image have remained strong through the decades. Remember, Elvis died 43 years ago.

Since Forbes began compiling its yearly lists of the top-earning dead celebrities in 2001, Elvis has never dropped below No. 4 and has held the No. 1 position seven times.

Presley has sold more than a billion records worldwide, earning him the title of best-selling solo artist of all time.

Elvis also remains the subject of many rumors. Some even feel he may actually be alive today. (If he were, the King would be 85 years old.)

"(Elvis) died back in 1977, leaving his dedicated fan base devastated," wrote Joshua Haigh of The Daily Mirror in 2016. "However, many have clung onto the hope that the star simply grew tired of fame. There were reports at the time that a black helicopter landed at Graceland just before his body was discovered.

"Some have claimed Elvis was picked up, and flew to Bermuda to fake his own death."

Two other intriguing personalities are included on this interesting list, ones that may not be that familiar to many:

Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss (No. 6), the famous author of "The Cat in the Hat," "Green Eggs and Ham" and other books, died in 1991 at the age of 87.

Because his books have been best-sellers for years -- and thanks to profitable licensing deals with Hallmark and Universal Studios -- Dr. Seuss has appeared in the Forbes ranking of top-earning dead celebrities every year since they began compiling the list.

No. 3 Schulz, the man behind the "Peanuts" comic strip, saw his creation running in more than 2,000 newspapers at its height. "Peanuts" eventually expanded into TV specials, books and merchandising.

Ironically, Schulz died in his sleep in February 2000, the night before his last "Peanuts" cartoon was published.