Arnold Schwarzenegger – $29 million (Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, 2003)
After the box-office success of 1991’s Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Arnold Schwarzenegger had made it clear that he wouldn’t participate in a sequel unless writer and director James Cameron was on board the project. But since Cameron had completely moved on from the franchise, he advised Schwarzenegger to make several lucrative demands from Warner Bros. in an attempt to end the studio’s pursuit for a follow-up movie. But much to Schwarzenegger’s surprise, Warner Bros. gave in to his demands, which included an upfront $29.25 million fee, which is one of the biggest Hollywood paydays ever.
Though Schwarzenegger wasn’t part of the fourth Terminator movie (2009’s Termination: Salvation), he returned to the franchise for the fifth and sixth installments: 2015’s Terminator Genisys and 2019’s Terminator: Dark Fate.