Celebrity - Paparazzi

The most expensive photos ever sold to the press…

It is hardly surprising that the photos sold to the press for the highest fees, are those of and sold by celebrities. Celebrity - PaparazziIn an age where celebrity news has changed the face of the press, celebrity stories are interesting but the public want to see photos. The desire of the public to get an insight into the coveted, aspirational lifestyles of celebrities has led to celebrities choosing to sell their images and profiting from their fame.

With the press keeping the fees paid for photos and stories sold, hush hush, it is hard to establish which stories and photos have fetched the highest price tags. As a result sourced figures are entirely reliant on the credibility of published reports and only take into account the photo sales figures that are available.

In August 2008 the photos of Knox Léon and Vivienne Marcheline Jolie-Pitt, the twins of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, reportedly sold for a staggering and record-breaking $14 million. Brad and Angelina sold the exclusive rights to an interview and the photos of their three-week-old twins to People, together with Hello!

Most expensive photo ever sold?
Most expensive photo ever sold?

Earlier that year in March 2008, Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony are documented as having sold photos of their two children Emme and Max, to People for $6 million, beating the previous record fee of $4.1 million that Brad and Angelina received from the sales of the photos of Shiloh Jolie Pitt to People in June 2006.

Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, currently under the press’ radar with the breakdown of their relationship, received a whopping $3 million for the sale of their wedding photos to OK! Magazine in October 2005. In August 2008, the baby photos of Levis Alves McConaughey, son of Camila Alves and Mathew McConaughey also sold for an awesome $3 million to OK! Magazine.

Demanding high price tags, celebrity photos are highly sought after and so generate bidding wars in which the press compete with one another for exclusive rights, raising their price tags to astronomical levels. Celebrities’ press agents take control of and demand the highest price for their photos and stories. But not every press story involves celebrities and any story that involves human experience, adversity or everyday issues can be sold to newspapers and magazines. So where do you go if you want to sell your story to the press?


Got a photo to sell to a newspaper or magazine? Find out more about selling your photo here: Sell My Photo

Alison Smith-Squire

Alison Smith-Squire is a writer, journalist and media agent selling exclusive real life stories to newspapers, magazines and TV. She owns the sell my story website Featureworld.co.uk, which was set up to help ordinary people sell their stories to the press.

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