Actor Paul Newman Had a Net Worth in the Millions When He Passed

Actor and racecar driver Paul Newman made a lot of money in his lifetime. Find out about his net worth and who inherited his estate.

Robin Hill-Gray - Author

Jul. 22 2022, Published 12:44 p.m. ET

Paul Newman
Source: Getty Images

Newman poses for photo in 1958

Over the years, Paul Newman was known for many things such as racing, political activism, and philanthropy. However, he was most known as an actor. His long career included many successful movies, which helped him amass great wealth. Here's a look at Newman's net worth at the time of his death and who inherited his estate.

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When Newman retired from acting in 2007, he said, "I'm not able to work anymore at the level that I would want to. You start to lose your memory, you start to lose your confidence, [and] you start to lose your invention. So I think that's pretty much a closed book for me." However, that book includes many interests and accomplishments.

Paul Newman's career included more than just acting.

Newman, an Ohio native, was born to Thersa Garth and Arthur Sigmund Newman. His father was a Jewish businessman who operated a sporting goods store. Raised in a religious household that focused on supporting his father's store, Newman deviated and took a keen interest in theater. As a child, he starred in small productions such as Robin Hood where he played a court jester, and Saint George and the Dragon.

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young paul newman
Source: Getty images

After Newman graduated from high school, he attended Ohio State University for a short time and didn't complete his degree. Newman also served in the Navy during World War II. He switched around to different programs within the Navy as his colorblindness was a hindrance, particularly for the aviation program he wanted to be part of. Soon after World War II, Newman attended Kenyon College where he obtained a BA in economics and drama.

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Newman made his Broadway debut in 1953, just two years after moving to New York. He starred in the production Picnic by Willian Inge. After several other roles, Newman found himself side by side in test scenes with James Dean (though he ultimately wasn't cast for that role) and soon he landed his first major film in 1959, The Young Philadelphians.

Paul Newman and wife Joanne
Source: Getty images

41st Academy Awards 1969

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The pursuit of acting wasn't Newman's only feat. He was also active in political sectors and though he identified as a Democrat, he voted for independent candidates. Newman soon found himself on Richard Nixon's personal enemy list for his support of Eugene McCarthy. He also developed a love for racing and competed in the Sports Car Club of America. Food company Newman's Own was created by A.E. Hotchner and the proceeds from sales would go directly to charities.

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Paul Newman

Actor, Racecar Driver, Director, Entrepreneur

Net worth: 80,000,000

Paul Newman was an actor, race car driver, entrepreneur, philanthropist, and film director. He built a substantial net worth over the course of his life.

Birthdate: January 26, 1925

Birthname: Paul Leonard Newman

Birthplace: Shaker Heights, Ohio

Education: Kenyon College, Yale University

Political Party: Democrat

Spouse: Joanne Woodward

Children: 6

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What was Paul Newman's net worth and who inherited his estate?

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Newman was worth $80 million. When it comes to his estate, the number is higher — $600 million to be exact. When Newman died in 2008, it was reported that his will was very specific, which isn't surprising given the number of people who would likely have a say in how his wealth was divided such as his wife and six children. His business manager Brian Murphy and executive Robert Forrester were listed as co-executors of Newman's estate.

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The will had a "no contest clause," which dictated that if anyone tried to challenge what Newman said he wanted, that person would be cut out of the will. As such, the executors of his estate sold his airplanes and whatever racecars he owned at the time of his death. The money from those sales was put into his estate. Also, Newman's awards were bequeathed to Newman's Own Foundation. His personal property such as art, instruments, and cars, were given to his wife Joanne Woodward.

However, Newman's will gets a little tricky because though he left very specific instructions, he didn't specify what would happen regarding his corporate interests, intangible assets, or tangible assets including but not limited to cash, stocks, and any other investment. It was assumed that these items were all placed in a trust.


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