Oprah tops powerful celebrity list

Superstar US talk show host Oprah Winfrey regains the title of the world's most powerful celebrity in her fourth appearance in the top spot.

WASHINGTON // Superstar US talk show host Oprah Winfrey regained the title of the world's most powerful celebrity in her fourth appearance in the top spot, said a survey published by Forbes magazine Monday. With US$315 million (Dh1,156m) in earnings, Ms Winfrey, 56, who next year is set to launch her own television channel, ousted Angelina Jolie as the top power player with the actress slipping from last year's number one to the 18th spot.

In second place to the talk show diva, popular singer Beyonce Knowles jumped two positions with earnings of US$87 million, following a profitable year for her growing entertainment and fashion empire. Director James Cameron, fresh from the success of his record-breaking movie "Avatar," came in third with earnings of US$210 million. The top rankings are based on income over the past 12 months, as well as web references, press clippings, broadcast mentions and major magazine covers devoted to the celebrity, Forbes said.

At number four was the list's highest-ranked newcomer - singing sensation and one-woman fashion whirlwind Lady Gaga. With huge tours and successful music ventures, the New York-born entertainer earned US$62 million over the last year. Golfer Tiger Woods kept his high standing despite sensational reports of his kinky extra-marital affairs, maintaining the number five position and raking in US$105 million even in the wake of his self-imposed six-month break from the game.

Others in the top 10 included pop singer Britney Spears at six, and Irish rockers U2 at seven. Oscar-winning actress Sandra Bullock, whose cheating husband kept her in the tabloid limelight, soared from last year's 92nd spot to be this year's number eight, with US$56 million in earnings. Actor Johnny Depp was at number nine, while singer Madonna fell seven positions from her 2009 spot to round out the top 10 with US$58 million in earnings.