Actor Rejected $29M To Star in ‘Elf’ Sequel


  • “Elf” earned over $220 million at the global box office
  • Ferrell was one of the highest-paid actors in the world in the 2000s
  • The actor still gets hefty paychecks from movie projects

American actor Will Ferell turned down a huge offer to star in the planned sequel to the well-known 2003 Christmas film “Elf.” 

The actor told The Hollywood Reporter he rejected the offer to play Buddy the Elf for the second time despite being offered $29 million because he did not like the film’s premise. The first movie earned over $220 million at the global box office.

As of 2021, Ferrell has a net worth of $160 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.

He was one of the highest-paid actors at the peak of his career in the early to late 2000s, earning over $20 million for a single film.

Among the movies that earned him big paychecks were “Kicking & Screaming,” “Bewitched,”  “Talladega Nights,” “Semi-Pro” and “Land of the Lost.” 

Today, the actor still gets hefty paychecks from films, but his recent earnings are a mix of lower base salary and backend profit participation points, according to the report.

Ferell became a cast member of  Saturday Night Live (SNL) in 1995 and enjoyed a seven-year tenure on the show. In 2001, he became the highest-paid SNL cast member, with a $17,500 salary per episode or $367,500 per season.

After starring in “Elf” in 2003, Ferrell continued to land major roles in films such as “Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy” and “Starsky and Hutch.”

In 2008, another box office smash came in the form of “Step Brothers.” The film earned $128 million worldwide.

His film successes continued in the years that followed. In 2006, he starred in “Stranger Than Fiction” and “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby” — his highest-grossing opening so far at $47 million. 

His career began to cool slightly in 2009 when “Land of the Lost” was released to a commercial and critical flop, earning only about $19 million during its opening weekend. 

The actor continued to make movies into the 2010s, but they were mostly sequels to past blockbusters.

Aside from his acting career, Ferrell also worked as a voice actor for several animated films and TV shows, including “Curious George” and “Family Guy.” The actor has also produced several television shows, including “Eastbound & Down” and “Succession.” 

Ferrell is part-owner of the Los Angeles FC soccer team. 

He has been living in a $9.9 million mansion in Los Angeles since 2007. The property, which he bought from Ellen DeGeneres, is worth $20 million in today’s market.

Pictured: Will Ferrell at the New York premiere of “Zoolander 2” on Feb. 9, 2016. Photo: Getty Images