Michael Jackson Is Top-Earning Dead Celeb
The iconic pop star, who died June 25, 2009, was estimated to have accumulated $170 million in earnings over the past year. This marks the second consecutive year MJ has topped the list -- between October 2010 and Oct. 2011 his estate brought in a staggering $275 million. Aside from his storied catalog, The King of Pop's estate also benefited from Cirque Du Soleil's "Immortal," which is based on his life.
His death is also the subject of an ongoing manslaughter trial targeting the singer's doctor, Conrad Murray.
This past year, Jackson was second in earnings only to U2, among pop acts both living and dead.
Several other music legends were among those ranked. Elvis Presley placed second with $55 million. Like Jackson, Presley's legacy benefited from a Cirque Du Soleil show ("Viva Elvis"), in addition to the famous Graceland memorial and his extensive catalog.
Other prominent celebrities on the Forbes list included Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, and model/actress Bettie Page.