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New York's Judge Judy highest paid actor on television

Judge Judy

Judge Judy Credit: (Getty Images)

Those must be some expensive robes! Brooklyn-born Judge Judy tops TV Guide's list of highest paid small screen stars with her whopping $45 million annual salary.

Highest per-episode pay goes to CBS' "Two and a Half Men" star Ashton Kutcher, 34, for his enviable $700,000 a show, while Judy Sheindlin, 69, enjoys the highest yearly pay for CBS' "Judge Judy."

Though networks overall are "holding down salaries," according to TV Guide, studio heads are still shelling out for reality television show judges. "American Idol's" Mariah Carey will earn $17 million on "American Idol" and NBC pays Howard Stern $15 million to judge "America's Got Talent."

Other high salaries include the $28 million per season David Letterman, 65, gets for his CBS late-night show and the $500,000 per episode that "NCIS" star Mark Harmon, 60, pulls down.

There were a couple surprises on the list, too. Crystal the Monkey from NBC's new "Animal Practice" show receives $12,000 per episode, which means the capuchin makes double what celebrity chef Mario Batali, 51, earns for hosting ABC's "The Chew."

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TOP ANNUAL SALARIES
1 Judge Judy Sheindlin, $45M
2 David Letterman, $28M
3 Jay Leno, $25M

TOP SALARIES PER EPISODE
1 Ashton Kutcher, "Two and a Half Men," $700K
2 Mark Harmon, "NCIS," $500K
3 Ellen Pompeo, "Grey's Anatomy," $350K
 

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