Sharapova Tops Forbes’ Russian Celebrities List Again

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(RIA Novosti – MOSCOW, July 25, 2013) ­ Tennis star Maria Sharapova has regained first place on a list of the most popular and richest Russian celebrities published by the Russian edition of Forbes magazine Thursday.

The Forbes rating of Russia’s top 50 celebrities is compliled according to a combination of factors including annual income, print media coverage and hits on Russia’s Yandex online search engine.

Apart from a hefty $29 million income for the year, Sharapova had 768,087 search hits on Yandex and was mentioned 7,909 times in the media in the period from June 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013.

Singer Grigory Leps came in second place with an income of $15 million, 6,576,266 Yandex hits and 1,409 media stories.

The artistic director of St. Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theater, Valery Gergiev, took third place with an income of $16.5 million, 84,384 Yandex hits and 4,271 media stories.

Pop singer Philip Kirkorov ($9.7 million) came in fourth, and ice-hockey star Alexander Ovechkin ($16.8 million) came fifth.

Singer Stas Mikhailov ($9.8 million), who has topped the Forbes list for the past two years, dropped to sixth place this year.

Russian pop diva Alla Pugachova slipped from the top 10 for the first time since the magazine stated publishing the list nine years ago, coming in at 11th place with an income of just $2.5 million.

Overall, the combined income of the top 50 Russian celebrities grew 11 percent over the year to reach $236.5 million, the Forbes list said.