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Jim Carrey Didn’t Want to Get Paid for this Movie Role but He Still Earned $35 Million from It

Before getting to the big leagues, all actors have to start somewhere. This means taking on small roles for small pay to get noticed.

That’s why you’d be surprised to find out that comedian Jim Carrey once refused to take an upfront salary for a movie role even though he was already an established actor.

Let’s find out more about Carrey’s bold move and how it paid off for him in the end.

Massive Payoff

s_bukley/Shutterstock: Carrey with ex-partner Jenny McCarthy at the premiere of ‘Yes Man’

When the comedian received the offer to star in the 2008 film ‘Yes Man’, he had just starred in a string of movies that didn’t do so well at the box office. So, instead of asking for his typical rate at the time, he negotiated to get 36.2% of the movie’s profits.

While it isn’t unheard of for actors to ink a similar deal today, it was considered to be a risky move for Carrey at the time. Lucky for him it paid off.

‘Yes Man’ went on to earn $223 million globally on a budget of $70 million and the actor went home with a reported $35 million. That was one of his largest paydays to date.

Mixed Reviews

DFree/Shutterstock: Zooey Deschanel starred opposite Carrey as his character’s love interest

In the Peyton Reed-directed movie, Carrey plays Carl, a pessimistic loan officer who was invited to a seminar where he learned to live life with a motto of saying ‘yes’ to everything. This proved to be a life-changing experience for him as he begins to form closer bonds with those around them.

Despite its popularity among audiences, ‘Yes Man’ received mixed reviews from critics, some of whom thought its plot was too ‘dim’. They seemed to agree though that Carrey’s performance was its saving grace.

While ‘Yes Man’ didn’t reach the same status as his classic comedies like ‘Ace Ventura: Pet Detective’, ‘Dumb and Dumber’, and ‘The Mask’, the movie’s success led to other starring roles.

Comedy Great

Andrea Raffin/Shutterstock: Carrey began his career as a sketch actor on ‘In Living Color’ in the early ‘90s

The 58-year-old comedian is regarded as one of the best ones of his generation. He is best known for his talent at impressions and his distinct style of slapstick comedy.

Carrey has also garnered recognition for his talents as a dramatic actor. He had notable stints in films like ‘Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind’, ‘The Truman Show’, and ‘Man on the Moon’, where he portrayed his comedy hero Andy Kaufman.

He continues to act to this day. Carrey’s latest film is the action-comedy ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’.

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