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Cost-Cutting Reflected in Stars' Pay, Although Surprise May Be in Who Makes What TV Guide, Movieline

In a survey of who makes what on television, veteran reporter Stephen Battaglio at TVGuide.com finds that cost-cutting has taken its toll in stars' pay this year. The stars of new series are  making between $75,000 to $125,000 per episode this year, compared with a salary for a lead in recent years somewhere between $150,000 to $200,000 per episode.

But the biggest surprise of the list may be in '"devastating" comparisons of who makes what, points out Movieline.com. For instance, how is it that Matthew Morrison of Emmy-nominated series "Glee" makes $30,000 per episode, the same as "Jersey Shore" reality star Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, the story asks. Kevin Dillon, a supporting actor on HBO's "Entourage," makes $200,000 per episode, double the fee earned by "Mad Men" star Jon Hamm, the article says.

Here's the top ten salaries being paid actors in TV comedies and dramas, per episode, according to the TVGuide.com article:

1. Charlie Sheen (Two and a Half Men) $1.25 million

2. Jon Cryer (Two and a Half Men) $550,000

3. Hugh Laurie (House) $400,000+

4. (tie)  Marcia Cross (Desperate Housewives) $400,000

            Teri Hatcher (Desperate Housewives) $400,000

            Felicity Huffman (Desperate Housewives) $400,000

            Eva Longoria Parker (Desperate Housewives) $400,000

            Dan Castellaneta (The Simpsons) $400,000

            Julie Kavner (The Simpsons) $400,000

10. (tie) David Caruso (CSI: Miami) $375,000

             Marg Helgenberger (CSI) $375,000

             Mark Harmon (NCIS) $375,000

[This item was revised at 5:58 a.m. 8/13/10]