Sean Connery’s net worth was estimated at $350 million.
As The Inquisitr reported, the famed actor passed away at the age of 90. His family announced his death on Saturday, saying he passed peacefully in his sleep while at his home in the Bahamas.
His passing has turned attention to his storied acting career — and the money he made along the way through a series of iconic films.
Connery Built Fortune Through His Acting Work
According to Celebrity Net Worth, the actor famous for his role as James Bond built a fortune of approximately $350 million.
While the actor gained fame for his portrayal of the British spy, he didn’t make much from the franchise at first. The site, which tracks the career earnings of celebrities, noted that he was paid just $16,000 for his performance in Dr. No, which was his first entry into the action movie franchise.
But his James Bond movies eventually earned much more, with the site noting that Connery was paid $3 million for Never Say Never Again.
Throughout his career, he did not appear overly concerned with his own personal net worth. The site noted that he earned $250,000 for his part in the 1991 film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves but decided to donate the entire salary to charity. As DW reported, he also took his estimated $1.25 million for a performance in Diamonds Are Forever and donated it to a Scottish educational charity that he founded, the Scottish International Education Trust. The organization helps men and women who show exceptional ability and promise, and it was founded by Connery to emphasize the importance of a proper education. Connery himself did not have much of a formal education but reportedly wanted to give back to others so they could.
Acting Decision Cost Connery Millions
While Connery’s work allowed him to build up a massive personal fortune, he had the potential to make hundreds of millions of more dollars through a role he ultimately turned down. As NME reported, he had the opportunity to play Gandalf in the Lord Of The Rings series but turned down the project despite an offer of $6 million per film.
The role eventually went to Ian McKellen, who earned acclaim for his performance throughout the series. But Connery had the potential to make significantly more than his counterpart, with reports that he was offered a 15 percent stake in the franchise’s box office profits. Had he taken the deal and accepted the part, he could have taken in an additional $450 million.
He stood by his decision to turn it down, saying afterward that he never understood the script and thought his replacement did an excellent job.
“I read the book. I read the script. I saw the movie. I still don’t understand it,” he shared. “Ian McKellen, I believe, is marvelous in it.”
While he lost out on the chance to make nearly half a billion dollars, Connery may have saved himself some difficulty in the project. As NME noted, McKellen found it very difficult to work in front of a green screen and broke down in tears on the set of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.