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100 Most Powerful Celebrities List: Which TV Stars Made the Cut?

by Catherine Lawson, posted May 19th 2011 8:00AM
Bethenny FrankelForbes has published its annual list of the 100 Most Powerful Celebrities List, and this year it contains a few shockers: Oprah's been knocked off the top spot, there's a teenager in the Top 3, and reality star Bethenny Frankel makes the cut.

Oprah Winfrey's ceded poll position to Lady Gaga, despite earning roughly three times as much.

Gaga's moved up from No. 4 on the list, which measures celebrity power through a combination of entertainment-related earnings, media visibility and social media popularity.

Although 'Forbes' estimated Gaga's earnings in the last year as $90 million -- as opposed to Oprah's mighty $290 million -- it also noted the huge importance of her 32 million Facebook fans and 10 million Twitter followers.

'Forbes' editor Dorothy Pomerantz explained that, "Lady Gaga beat Oprah this year because of her social media power. She can use Twitter and Facebook to work the 'little monsters' into a frenzy that leads to record sales and media attention. She's the best example of how celebrities will need to manage their careers in the coming years."

Oprah, who next week ends 'The Oprah Winfrey Show' syndicated TV chat show after 25 years, dropped to No. 2, leaving her sandwiched between Gaga and 17-year old Justin Bieber. The teenage pop sensation and 'CSI' guest star earned $53 million over the last 12 months thanks to concerts, music sales and a 3-D documentary movie that grossed $100 million at the global box office.

Thanks to the buzz surrounding the U.S. debut of 'The X Factor' later this year Simon Cowell has risen to No. 9 in the 'Most Powerful' list (up from 11th last year), with estimated earnings of $50 million.

'Celebrity Apprentice' host Donald Trump may have just given up his chance to be the most powerful politician in the world, but he can take some consolation in the fact that 'Forbes' has ranked him as the 17th most powerful celebrity, which is one place higher than Dr. Phil McGraw.

'Friends' alum Jennifer Aniston proves she can still work it, with an impressive 21st-place ranking, making her technically more powerful than Steven Spielberg (22nd) and Ryan Seacrest (24th). She's joined on the list by former TV actresses Sarah-Jessica Parker (73) and Katharine Heigl (89).

Broadcasting bad boys Howard Stern and Charlie Sheen also make it into the Top 30, at 26th and 28th place respectively. Sheen may take some comfort from the fact that his 'Two a Half Men' nemesis, Chuck Lorre, is ranked way below him, in 77th place.

The list makes for some interesting bedfellows as conservative commentator Glenn Beck (No. 30) nestles alongside talk show host Ellen DeGeneres (No. 31).

The battle of the late night hosts has been won by David Letterman, who is placed 33rd, way ahead of his rival Jay Leno (56th).

One of the big surprises this year is the inclusion of former 'Real Housewives of New York City' star Bethenny Frankel. She made the list after using her latest Bravo TV show, 'Bethenny Ever After,' to promote her Skinnygirl brand of drinks, which she sold for $100 million, landing her at No. 42. That's 25 places higher than reality TV exec Mark Burnett, the mastermind behind 'Survivor,' 'The Apprentice' and 'Shark Tank,' to name but a few.

Other TV names in the list include Rush Limbaugh (23), Jerries Bruckheimer (39) and Seinfeld (40), 'American Idol' judge Jennifer Lopez (50), 'Law & Order' mastermind Dick Wolfe (54) and 'Office' star Steve Carell (87).

The bottom of the list is rounded out by a slew of current network TV stars: Tina Fey (92), Courteney Cox (93), Hugh Laurie (97), Mark Harmon (98), Teri Hatcher (99) and Mariska Hargitay (100).

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I'm surprised Conan O'Brien is not on the list. As much as I love Dave, Conan has a lot more influence over people. If it wasn't for Conan, Team Coco wouldn't exist.

May 19 2011 at 4:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Big deal. Who really cares about Oprah...she's a parasite....she thinks she's God and the sick media just eats her s--t all the time...shoves her down our throats. Oh God, I'm so glad she's going to paid cable maybe I won't have to hear about her anymore.

May 19 2011 at 1:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

TAnd the media sticks these talentless , disgusting creeps down our throats every day. Please these so called celebrities are ruining our children.. What a pathietic country this is. What happened to us. Too many morons are breeding children..me thinks...help get me outta here.

May 19 2011 at 1:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

lady gaga was 6 months old when the oprah winfrey show first aired. oprah was on tv for 8 years before bieber was born.

May 19 2011 at 9:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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