Emmys 2021: What is Cynthia Erivo’s Net Worth?

Cynthia Erivo might take home another Emmy Award after playing Aretha Franklin in the National Geographic limited series, Genius. The actor and singer earned the coveted role after Clive Davis heard her singing Franklin’s hit, “Ain’t No Way.” 

Before being nominated, Erivo already had a Daytime Emmy from Broadway’s The Color Purple and several movies under her belt. But, how much money does the Widows star make? 

Emmys nominee Cynthia Erivo looking away from the camera at a red carpet event.
Cynthia Erivo | Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

Cynthia Erivo’s net worth and how she became famous

As of this writing, Erivo’s net worth sits at $3 million, per Celebrity Net Worth. The actor, 34, was born in Stockwell, London, England in Jan. 1987. During her time in England, Erivo studied acting professionally. Soon, she got accepted into the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. Once she graduated from the program, Erivo booked a role on fellow Emmy nominee Michaela Coel’s show, Chewing Gum

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Eventually, the actor moved to New York to pursue stage acting. In 2016, Erivo won the part of Celie in the Broadway adaptation of The Color Purple. The original cast also included Jennifer Hudson and Orange Is The New Black star, Danielle Brooks. The Color Purple earned Erivo a Tony Awards win in 2017. After leaving the show, she starred in another production, The Last Five Years.  

In 2018, Erivo made her film debut in Bad Times at the El Royale. Next, she played Harriet Tubman in the titular movie. Through Harriet, Erivo earned two Oscar nominations. Since then, she’s consistently worked on other projects, including her debut album, Ch. 1 Vs. 1. As of this writing, Erivo’s net worth sits at $3 million, per Celebrity Net Worth

Why Cynthia Erivo’s nomination is historic

RELATED: What Movies Has Golden Globe Nominee Cynthia Erivo Starred In, and Does She Have an EGOT?

Erivo never met Franklin before Genius. However, she said the Grammy winner, who died in 2018, would be proud of the nomination. When Erivo found out about the nod, she admitted that it felt like the woman she portrayed pranked the actor. 

“It feels really good,” Erivo said of her nomination to E! News’ Daily Pop. “It also feels like Miss Aretha herself is like playing a joke on me because I don’t think anything like this would happen without her involvement. So it kind of feels like a tap on the shoulder, ‘Well done, you did good.’ And I love it. I’m so pleased that we get to celebrate her this way. It’s really cool.” 

The Carrier actor could potentially win the award for playing the Queen of Soul. In that case, she will be in historic company. According to Billboard, the accolade could make her the fourth actor to win the category in the 2000s for playing a real-life entertainer. The first three were Halle Berry as Dorothy Dandridge in Introducing Dorothy Dandridge (2000), Judy Davis as Judy Garland in Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows (2001), and Michelle Williams as Gwen Verdon in Fosse/Verdon.

Why Erivo had to be ‘open enough’ to play Aretha Franklin

Although she could win an Emmy for portraying Franklin, Erivo didn’t always think she would lay the “Respect” artist. During an interview with Variety, she said playing the legendary singer required more than singing chops. In addition to covering Franklin’s timeless hits, Erivo said she needed to uncover the singer’s “activism, motherhood, music,” and “relationships” in the series. 

“I wanted to make sure that I was open enough and ready enough to do that,” she said of accepting the role. 

The 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards airs on Sunday at 8 p.m. EST on CBS with Cedric The Entertainer as its host. Additionally, the ceremony will stream on Roku, Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, AT&T TV, Sling TV, Fubo TV, and CBS’ streaming service Paramount.